The pre-nursery (2-3 year olds)
Our main aim in our pre-nursery group is to provide a safe and loving environment where the children can freely explore and express their own interests.
We combine a balance of child-led play with adult-initiated learning, specifically designed to develop your child’s creativity, caring for others and social skills, as they establish their own identity. We incorporate a range of activities, role play and social development skills that are specifically designed to encourage independence, collaboration and a greater understanding of their surroundings and others around them. At Thames British School we have two teachers (an English and a Spanish native) for a group of 15 and an assistant to help whenever it is necessary.
Learning through play
We combine the Early Years Foundation Stage with other methodologies like the Reggio Emilia method and take some Montessori principles in our daily activities and adjust the activity to suit the development stage of each child. In the class we have different areas, for example, a reading corner, role play, sensory area and maths area for the children to freely explore the classroom independently or with adult support if needed. At Thames British School we consider every activity to be a learning opportunity – sorting shapes and sizes introduces early mathematics, enjoying rhymes, singing and music encourages language development and painting, mark making and messy play stimulates creativity. Every activity is an opportunity for children to learn valuable skills that will shape their growth and future development. We create individual plans to meet your child’s needs.
Activities and Materials
Throughout the day we encourage the children to express their own interests through creating opportunities to a variety of play activities. Some examples of activities that we do include;
- Sensory table
- Reading and song corner
- Messy play (paint, water, shaving foam, jelly, pasta, lentils, chickpeas, flour etc.)
- Role play (kitchen, cars, supermarket etc.)
- Gym, climbing, building, jumping
- Outdoor play
We try to use a range of different materials and textures so the children can explore many different sensory experiences. Some materials that we use include;
- sand, water, leaves, flowers, bark, shells, sticks, rocks, pinecones, chestnuts, fruit etc.
- blocks • building materials • manipulatives • measuring • pouring devices (cups, spoons, buckets, funnels)
- dramatic play props: play cars, animals, and people • blankets • recycled materials (paper tubes, papers, ribbons, caps, lids, wood scraps, foam, cardboard) •tools etc.
- art materials (buttons, spools, natural and colored popsicle sticks, beads, straws, paints, brushes, stickers) etc.
At this developmental stage the child is the main focus and we provide individualised care for each child depending on their needs within an enriching and stimulating environment. The teachers act only as a guide to aid their growth and development.
Here at TBS children have a lot of time for learning through play and some of the current 2-3 class’s favourite activities include :
- Building towers with different materials
- Imitating daily activities with cars, making circuits, parking cars
- Exploring mystery boxes (with varied materials inside)
- Kitchen role play, making food, drinks, washing up etc.
- Changing the nappies of the dolls, feeding them, giving them a dummy etc.
- Making things with playdough, expressing ourselves, experiencing the different textures
- Making circuits in the gym with foam mattresses and climbing bars
- Matching colours with stickers
- Animals in their different environments, in the ocean, in a forest etc.
- Songbook to choose songs freely with the teacher and independently
- Using paint to mix colours, feel the texture and create their own pictures.
Potty training is a key milestone for many of our 2 to 3 year olds; we work with you and your child to help them adapt confidently to this new experience, gently encouraging children to take responsibility for their own hygiene and emphasising the importance of correct hand washing. It is important that we wait until the child expresses an interest in the toilet and is aware of when they have a dirty nappy as this will make the process a lot smoother for the child.