Banbridge Nursery School



We aim to provide our children with a rich variety of play activities and other experiences in a stimulating and challenging environment and to provide each child with equal opportunities to develop the learning associated with:

  • Personal, Social and Emotional development
  • Physical development and movement
  • Language development
  • Early mathematical development
  • The world around us
  • The Arts

Personal, Social and Emotional Development is crucial for young children in all aspects of their lives and gives them the best opportunity for success in all other areas of learning. We aim to promote and develop self-esteem and self-responsibility alongside interest, understanding and value for the child’s own experiences and those of other people.

We provide the children with opportunities to work as an individual and as part of a group thereby developing and fostering their personal, social and emotional skills. These include:

  • Role play and dressing up
  • One-to-one discussion
  • Circle time and circle games
  • Story telling
  • Working with puppets

Language Development underpins all learning. We provide the children with the opportunity to explore a variety of activities in order to enrich their skills of communication to enable them to function effectively as a member of society.

The children are given opportunities to develop skills in speaking and listening in order to be able to process information, interact with others and begin to be aware of their needs, activities such as:

  • Role play
  • Storytelling to each other or to the group
  • Listening games such as sound lotto
  • Nursery rhyme activities and songs

As preparation for reading, we encourage an enjoyment of books and provide activities which will stimulate the children’s skills in using books as a means of gathering information and a means of gaining and sharing the pleasure that books afford. The children are also introduced to the idea of writing as a means of communication. The children are given opportunities to:

  • use a variety of writing equipment and papers
  • model with dough and clay
  • make marks with paints, pastels etc.

Early Mathematical Development includes counting, sorting, matching, identifying patterns, making connections and recognizing relationships. Mathematical concepts are important for everyday life and they develop slowly in the young child. We provide the children with opportunities to re-visit activities and to experience mathematical ideas in many different contexts. These include activities, both indoors and outdoors, such as:

  • role play
  • construction
  • sand and water play
  • stories and rhymes
  • preparing snack
  • music and movement
  • the daily routines

Physical Development and Movement helps children to gain confidence and self esteem as they discover what they can do. Children enjoy physical play and the sense of freedom it brings. We provide the children with a highly structured, purpose-built outdoor play area and playroom with opportunities such as:

  • make music
  • climb, run and jump
  • construct
  • technology – with a range of tools
  • be creative
  • gain experience in using a range of wheeled equipment – trikes, scooters, trucks, push along carts etc.

The World Around Us Children are naturally curious about their environment and the people around them and frequently ask questions. We provide the children with an exciting, stimulating environment both indoors and outdoors with a wide variety of activities and experiences in play, through which the children can begin to develop a range of skills and concepts including observation, experimentation and free exploration of their surroundings, opportunities to:

  • observe changes in natural materials
  • explore a range of natural and manmade materials
  • ask questions about why things happen and how they work
  • make predictions

The Arts is about making new things, taking risks and experimenting, coming up with new ideas, solving problems and coping with uncertainty. Creative play not only helps foster these skills, but it can also assist with emotional development, promote aesthetic awareness and is an avenue for self-expression. We provide opportunities for the children to explore and share their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of:

  • art and design activities
  • music and movement
  • dance and drama
  • role play activities

In developing the children’s creativity, the emphasis is very much on the process; the children’s enjoyment and the learning that is taking place rather than the finished product. We celebrate the uniqueness of each child’s work.