Nursery School at St Joseph’s College


Inspired learning through play for children aged
2 to 4

At our private Nursery, children can enjoy days filled with exciting play-based activities, all while under the care of our gentle, patient, and well-qualified staff. With each session, youngsters can build confidence and friendships through fun and engaging activities. Parents can rest easy knowing that their pre-school children are not only safe and happy but also actively learning and growing.

Water, sand and mud

Curriculum sounds like a strangely grown-up word to use in connection with very young children, but although the learning experienced in our private nursery is play-based – with the children leading the way – it is purposeful.

The dedicated staff create a calm and motivated environment, allowing each child’s interests to emerge. Encouragement draws out deeper understanding and inspires further experimentation. Playing with water, sand and mud equals science, engineering and design – a curriculum!

The Nursery has its own colourful and secure outdoor play area, where walls can be built, tricycles ridden and energy expended. Just steps away are all the facilities and resources of the infant and junior departments, inviting green spaces and the rest of the College campus. 

By encountering a broad range of carefully planned activities, each child is encouraged to develop good manners and respect for one another as they learn.

As with every other area in the Nursery, sport is guided by fun. Very small children are developing rapidly and vary in the degree of coordination they can muster. But with heaps of energy and enthusiasm, they tend to come on in leaps and bounds.

Play in itself builds physical dexterity, and we add weekly PE multi-sports sessions in the school hall with specialist sports staff. Come the summer, we have a delightful Nursery Sports Day with a mix of (short) races and engaging physical challenges.

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Freedom to make their marks in their own way, is the guiding principle of Nursery art. Free painting and drawing allow children the opportunity to express themselves and try to capture the world as they know it. With a little help, they move on to collage, creating little masterpieces of cutting and sticking. Junk modelling is very popular too. 

Session by session our Nursery children grow in confidence as they print successfully, use scissors carefully and place one object upon another. Just think of those Easter cards and Christmas presents that will be coming home.

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We believe in taking part; in everybody having a go. The performing arts bring joy into the lives of participants and audiences alike. Our specialist music and dance teachers know just how to get those rhythms beating and toes leaping. Come to our annual Nursery Nativity play and you’ll see how far and fast our youngest performers have come on.

Dressing up isn’t just for the public stage either. Our cheerful Nursery is equipped with a shop, a kitchen and a market stall just ready to be brought to life through the children’s imaginations and our dressing-up box is wonderfully deep.

With two nursery gardens to play in, plus a small vegetable patch and a fully equipped mud kitchen – soil soup, anyone? Children are given every incentive to get out in the fresh air to have fun with their friends. 

Welly walks take our bold explorers further into the spacious green of St Joseph’s campus – as far as the Gruffalo Wood, away beyond the Senior sports pitches. Found materials such as leaves, twigs and feathers are treasures to be worked into pictures and potions.


Prep Open Morning

Thursday 16 May 2024




Here you will find answers to some of the commonly asked questions about St Joseph’s College Nursery. Feel free to browse through the questions to learn more.

My child is still in nappies. Will this be a problem?

We cater for children from two years old and are equipped with nappy changing facilities, ready to do the necessary.

An 8.00 am start helps me as a working parent but my son/daughter won’t eat breakfast so early. Can you help?

Families are very welcome to send their child’s breakfast to school with them. A showdown over breakfast at home is quite unnecessary when a leisurely breakfast at Nursery is an option.

Which meals are served during the day?

Children are provided with simple morning and afternoon snacks. A full hot lunch is brought across from the College kitchen to provide an appetising and wholesome meal in the middle of the day. Then there’s Nursery tea at 4.00 pm.

What is different about your Nursery provision?

St Joseph’s College year-round Nursery offers a unique provision, with Sport, Drama and Music taught to children as young as two-years-old by our qualified specialist staff. We ensure children receive high-quality instruction in these areas right from the beginning of their education.

How do you ensure that children of different age groups can safely and comfortably play together in the playground?

The beauty of being connected to St Joseph’s Prep School is that the children have access to great facilities and teachers. They’re part of the Prep School community. However, the Nursery has its own space with designated areas, such as its own adjacent playground. 

Will my child need to wear a uniform?

The only extras needed for St Jo’s Nursery are wellies, waterproofs and a sense of adventure for our mud kitchen and 60-acre grounds. Little St Jo’s red sweatshirts are available to buy – but these are optional.

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