Building a Love of Learning

“In the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) all children are making excellent progress consistent with their age and development. By the end of Reception the majority are exceeding many of the Early Learning Goals and some are working to a level two years above their chronological age.”

ISI Report 2018

Those early years of learning and discovering are so important to a child’s well-being and learning. We provide our Nursery children with a happy and nurturing environment that becomes a safe place for them to grow and learn. With highly trained and skilled staff, we provide a range of stimulating and exciting activities which enable each child to develop as an individual and progress at the rate that is appropriate for them. Through play, and with the nurturing support of adults, children enjoy learning the foundations of life long skills that lead to reading, writing and scientific enquiry. Our children engage in a wide variety of experiences, from walks in the woods to creative play that builds their imagination, sense of character and fun. Every child is encouraged to be independent and is supported to build practical life skills, such as cooperative play and communication skills.

In Pre-Nursery, Nursery and Reception, we cover the seven areas of learning outlined in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and then develop that curriculum to suit the needs of our children, and reflect the Ardingly ethos.

We frame our learning opportunities around a theme or topic. These can be a few weeks long or span most of the term. This will depend on the children’s interests and the route they chose to follow them. The topic often starts with a familiar book or author based on the children’s interest to ensure maximum engagement with learning.


There are many different types of play:

Imaginative Play

Children love having the chance to make up their own stories. We help by supplying simple items to aid their imaginations.  This offers children the chance to act out aspects of their own lives which may be puzzling them, or to experience how it might feel to be someone else or something different.

Energetic Play

Children love to be busy and active and we have the perfect facilities for them to develop physical skills, such as: control and balance, spatial awareness, hand‑eye coordination and confidence in their own skill, strength and judgement.

Small World Play

With our extensive range of toys, children can play out different real life or imaginary scenarios. This gives children the opportunity to collaborate with one another, make choices, develop physical dexterity, consider mathematical concepts  and act out their present understanding of the real world.

Sounds and Musical Play

Children love rhythm, dance, singing and rhyming and these all develop listening skills and can be used to develop phonics and numeracy.

Building Blocks

Children gain powerful emotional satisfaction from knocking down a tower and then building it up again. This can develop counting skills, balance hand-eye coordination and encourage teamwork and communication as they work with peers.