A child that attends any nursery whose raison d’être is the education of that child is taking the first steps into a fascinating and wonderful world of learning and experience.
It is the wonders of this world, the world within and those worlds beyond, that form the basis of the educational philosophy of Beckett House.
Projects such as ‘My Body’, ‘Mini Beasts’, ‘Outer Space’, ‘People who help us’, ‘Continents of the world’ encourage children to love the rollercoaster of learning that is the early life of a child at Beckett House because it is this love for learning that creates a child’s faith in its own abilities.
And it all starts at nursery.
Welcome and early activities
All-day children are welcomed at Beckett House from 8.30 and morning children from 9.00; hanging their coats on their own peg, removing their shoes and putting on their slippers.
All children are encouraged to choose an activity such as drawing, reading or something from the sensorial or practical life and language or maths sections, this first activity being part of the Montessori work cycle.
All these activities are monitored by members of staff who encourage the children to increase their knowledge and abilities. Some may be beginning the development of their writing skills using sand-paper letters, some will be putting word cards together to make small sentences, and others may be ‘following the dots’ and learning to write their names or other words.
Free flow morning snack
During the morning children are invited to have a snack and a drink. The snack is a free-flow time where children are able to finish something on which they were working and then sit down at the table and help themselves to such things as rice cakes, plain biscuits, pitta bread and humus, bread sticks accompanied by water or milk to drink. (Sugar based fruit cordials are not served).
Each day, after snack, there is an extra-curricular activity which may include drama, music and dance, yoga or French. After these activities and before lunch the children will be asked to wash their hands and prepare for their meal.
Lunch - a time to sit together and socialize
Lunch is freshly prepared every day in the nursery’s own kitchen; meals such as roast chicken, fish, pasta, stews and a variety of fresh desserts and fruit. The children all sit together are expected to use knives, forks and spoons and where appropriate help themselves.
After lunch those children that remain at nursery for the afternoon will have a lie down and mostly manage to sleep until the afternoon children arrive.
Circle-time & running, jumping and bouncing about time.
In the afternoon there is circle time where children often take turns to discuss a topic or a toy of their choice. This is often followed by the Montessori work cycle and then a story. After is snack time and this is similar to that in the morning. Following is an extra-curricular or physical activity such as trampoline or climbing frame.
Story time and home
Towards the end of the day a story is usually read while the children are collected between 5.00 and 5.30.
Time in the park – come rain or come shine; and even Snow!
Although it has its own small open space Beckett House is fortunate to be close to a number of parks, garden squares and children’s play grounds and the children are frequently taken out even on some occasions when it is raining or snowing – they just love the snow!