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3. Learning & Teaching


Young children learn in a variety of ways: through experimenting, watching, practising, listening, talking, playing. They learn in a variety of social situations: alone, in pairs, in larger groups. Above all, they learn at their own pace, building on knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes already developed.

Our teaching methods and the organisation of the day and equipment are designed to meet these learning needs.

We have two classrooms and a large garden, each with areas containing different sorts of equipment and resources to provide opportunities for learning each part of the curriculum. Almost all equipment is stored so that children can help themselves to what they need. Learning to tidy up after yourself is an important part of the nursery experience.


Between 9.00 and 11.00 in the mornings and between 12.45 and 3.00 in the afternoons, children are free to play in either of the classrooms and the garden.


During these periods, staff are timetabled to work in turn in different areas of the nursery and with different children.

Staff are constantly observing children. These observations are used to enable us to make plans for the child at our daily and weekly planning/evaluation meetings. For example, if we observe that a child loves imaginative play but rarely goes into the graphics area, we would encourage her/him to write as part of role play.


Between 11.00 and 11.10 and again between 3.00 and 3.10, we tidy up. Then at 11.15 and 3.15 the children are divided into three groups according to age and experience for story, singing, rhymes, phonological awareness, number rhymes & stories and circle time.



We keep a file for each child. This contains background information, your comments on your child’s development taken at the initial visit and on-going observations about aspects of your child’s learning over their time at nursery. We use these observation's to help us understand how your child learns best and track their progress during their time with us. In addition to this every child has a Portfolio. Your child's Portfolio includes photos, samples of their work and we strongly encourage parents to contribute to them too. Your child's Portfolio really helps your child to communicate what they have been doing at school and home and becomes a history of your child's time at Tachbrook.  We use observations and Portfolio's to assess children’s development at regular intervals:


  1. At the end of your child’s first term we will give you a written review of their progress including how they settled in, what they like doing and who they play with. For some children we might decided on a learning priority of what they might need to help learn next.
  2. From then on, we assess children’s progress at the end of every term using our tracking system and use this to plan next steps.
  3. Before your child goes to Primary School we complete a transfer record to inform the new school of your child’s development. You will get a copy of this.


All staff contribute to observation's and Portfolios; the key worker is responsible for coordinating them, in partnership with the class teacher. You are welcome to see your child’s record at any time.


Some children have more difficulty than others in learning. Usually we can meet children’s extra needs from our own resources. We plan how best to do this together with you. Occasionally we might need to ask for another professional’s advice such as a Speech and Language Therapist or the school’s Educational Psychologist. After your child is receiving help from an external professionals or we think your child needs further support you will receive a report more regularly called an SEN Support Plan. This will incorporate targets and advice set by the school in conjunction with the specialists' advice. Please also see our Special Educational Needs Policy for more information on this.