“Children in the early years get off to a good start. They are taught well and supported effectively in their learning. They make good progress from their starting points.”

(Ofsted, July 2016)

At our school, children are given irresistible opportunities through playful learning and adult-led activities, making full use of learning environment indoors and outdoors.  Our nursery provision provides high-quality pre-school experiences for our children.

Our vision is that all children are happy, thrive and succeed during their first year at school. A carefully planned curriculum, which is informed by the children’s interests, ensures children are active participants in their learning and development. Our enabling environments allow them to have early learning experiences through play-based collaborative interactions and exciting provocations. Our highly-skilled staff are passionate about Early Education and supporting children to have the very best start to their learning journey at school.

The Early Years Foundation Stage is a compulsory legal framework for children aged 2 – 5 years old. It sets out seven ‘areas of learning’ as well as drawing attention to how young children develop and learn. These ‘characteristics of effective learning’ underpin everything we do and embrace all areas of learning and development. By fostering children’s learning attitude, we are laying the foundations for success throughout their schooling.

Prime areas

  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development

Specific areas

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

Teaching and learning ensures that the opportunities to explore key skills within these seven areas are provided through an enabling, exciting and supportive approaches. In Reception we use Read Write Inc. Phonics and Talk Through Stories approaches to support the teaching of Early Reading. We use the NCETM: Mastering Number programme to support our teaching of Mathematics.

Observation of children in their play, by all adults including parents, supports the curriculum and informs next steps in the children’s learning. Photographs of learning are shared with parents and carers through Seesaw each week. Cross-curricular opportunities are skilfully planned to enable children to maximise on learning together with the opportunity to learn and develop new skills.

Before the children start school, there are several opportunities for the children to visit their new learning environment and staff in the school. The children are visited at home by two of the Reception Team staff and parents are invited to an open evening to find out about life at our schools before commencing their first day at school. We believe that strong relationships between home and school are essential to support children most effectively with their learning and work hard to build these relationships as soon as children get a place at school.

Enrichment opportunities are planned throughout the year to provide learning opportunities for first hand, real life experiences. These have included visits to local farms, visits from local policing teams and the fire brigade, and watching for seasonal changes on local walks.

Nursery at River Mead School
Nursery at River Mead School

Admission Information

We are unable to take any new admissions if your child is under three years of age. Free Entitlement for all children starts the term after their third birthday. We offer 30 hours of Free Entitlement (subject to availability and verification of the 30 hours code). Please note that having a place at River Mead Nursery does not entitle a child to a place at River Mead School and you will need to follow guidelines set out by Wiltshire Council and apply as per their current criteria.

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