Statement of intent
The Ark Nursery School believes that play is the means by which a young child learns and develops and is something that a child best enjoys. A child’s play has a purpose and can be a step towards the learning and understanding of valuable skills. It can help the child fit into the world physically, intellectually, emotionally and socially, and grow to be a healthy and competent individual.
The Ark Nursery School will endeavour to provide children with a stimulating environment, where playing and learning go hand in hand.
A varied selection of activities will be provided throughout the day, using both indoor and outdoor activities. Consideration will be taken to ensure that provision is made for children with differing learning styles,special needs and disabilities.
A large variety of different media, such as shaving foam, corn flour, jelly, spaghetti, clay and play dough will be made available. These will provide different tactile and imaginative experiences and will encourage expressive language.
Sand and Water
These will be made available on a regular basis. They provide opportunities to experience scientific and mathematical concepts as well as encouraging social and language development.
Activities such as painting, sticking, chalking and box modelling will be made regularly available. Additionally games such as ring games, lotto and snap will encourage conversation and the learning of social skills – taking turns, sharing, winning and losing.
A mark making area with pencils, pens, crayons, stamping, hole punch, paper etc is in the quiet room.
The nursery recognizes the importance of imaginative play to children and will aim to provide rich opportunities to widen the imagination. These will include dolls and accessories, road maps and cars, small blocks, trains, dressing up clothes and a role play area. Various different play settings will be made available. There is also a selection of construction toys which additionally encourage good hand/eye coordination, counting, sorting, etc.
Tunnels, tricycles, balls, hoops, big blocks, climbing apparatus etc are provided
A variety of books (both fiction and non-fiction) are available for children to look at and read, both under supervision and alone. In any event children will be read to as a group each day.
Computer / ICT
The computer is available everyday. There are a variety of educational games. It encourages eye-hand co-ordination, thinking skills and turn taking etc.
A tape/CD player, TV/Video and musical instruments will be available so that in addition to hearing and responding to music children will be encouraged to think about how sounds are produced
All children will have daily access to the Montessori Room where the practical life materials help develop concentration and hand/eye co-ordination, fine motor skills and self discipline. Children learn to sort, match and grade, and recognise shape and colour through using the sensorial materials, and to learn about and explore their world through the cultural activities. Dependent upon the individual child’s level of development, they may progress to using the maths and language materials. (However, due to the very young age at which some children now enter school, children are not always ready to access these materials.) Each child is able to work at their own level on suitably challenging tasks.