Our Early Years setting provides a friendly and welcoming atmosphere, nurturing the children as they begin their learning journey through school. 

Learning and development

In our purpose built Early Years building, children from Nursery and Reception play and learn through a wide range of hands on learning experiences.

Our curriculum and approach to learning is stimulating, creative and fun. Throughout each day the children in both our Nursery and Reception classes develop their independence, confidence and cognitive skills. 

In the EYFS, the children quickly develop a passion to know and understand the world they live in

ISI June 2019

Our early years building provides opportunities for the children to explore and investigate in a dedicated inside and outside area. Teaching staff plan for experiences that support and develop each individual child across all areas of the curriculum. The building is divided into a separate Nursery and Reception area, although the free flow layout allows the children to develop relationships across all groups of children and staff enabling smooth transitions between each age group. The shared role play and outside area enable rich role play and learning experience for all children. 

The Curriculum

Your child will be learning skills, acquiring new knowledge and demonstrating their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development.

The prime areas of learning that underpin the planning and assessment procedures at St Olave's Prep School's Early Years department are as follows:

Communication and Language

Physical Development

Personal, Social and Emotional Development

These prime areas are the most essential for your child’s healthy development and future learning as they underpin learning in all the other areas of the curriculum.

As the children grow confident in each of the above areas we begin to develop their learning in each of the following areas therefore giving them a wide expanse of knowledge in preparation for their next step into the Lower School.



Understanding the World

Expressive Arts and Design

Each of these areas are continually assessed to ensure that next steps are devised that are suitable for the individual child.

Play is a key opportunity for children to think creatively and flexibly, solve problems and link ideas.

Development matters. 


Our youngest children begin their educational journey in a calm and nurturing environment taught by highly qualified teachers and teaching assistants. Through enriching and exciting experiences they develop a curiosity and love of learning.

Our Nursery provides a setting where children are respected and learn to respect each other – constructive interaction with their peers and adults in the classroom is taught as part of every day. Children understand that we are all different, but effective communication and friendships are actively encouraged.

Our highly qualified staff has a wealth of experience in teaching effectively and promoting a very positive, stimulating curriculum.

We listen to children and assist them in becoming happy, settled and confident individuals.

The children in our Nursery class are part of the whole school community and take part in many whole school experiences such as sports day, end of term assemblies and theme days. 

Each child has their own assessment document that builds a picture of achievement. Ongoing assessments ensure that we give each child the individual education that provides them with the opportunity to reach their full potential.

Children in the EYFS go about their school day confidently, secure in their knowledge of routines. Their participation in a wide range of readily accessible indoors and outdoors activities enables them to make successful choices and to follow their own, often spontaneous, interests.

ISI June 2019

The environment that we have created at St Olave's Prep School in our new Early Years building gives an amazing scope for learning.

Our Nursery children enjoy weekly visits to the library instilling a love and passion for reading. This builds on the teaching of Phase One phonics to develop the children’s auditory and communication skills.

Children enjoy regular trips to support and enhance their learning experiences, which in the past have included farm visits, beach visits and museum workshops. They also have specialist teachers for PE and music.




I just love the activities the children are lucky enough to experience at school. Such a fantastic place to spend their primary days!

St Olave’s Parent

In Reception the children continue their learning journey. Our curriculum follows the Early Years Statutory Framework providing experiences that are enriched through carefully planned activities and trips to extend the children’s knowledge and inquisity into the world around them.

We have a range of specialist teachers for PE, Music, Computing and French. The children also have weekly Forest School or Library sessions. 

The early reading and writing skills that have been nurtured through the children’s time in Nursery are continued into Reception with the progression into decoding and segmenting words. We use the Read Write Inc scheme to teach phonics skills. The children have regular directed phonics sessions in small focused groups. 

Home Links & Key Documents

We pride ourselves on creating good links between home and school. We put a great deal of effort into the settling process for new children, and we have an open door policy for parents.  

Prior to starting in school parents and children are invited to several ‘stay and play’ sessions to allow children to begin forming positive relationships with their new teachers and peers. 

We offer a phonics and maths session to parents, providing material and key terminology that can be used at home to support school learning.

Daily timetable example
Pre entry ticklist
What to expect when


Daily timetable example
Pre entry ticklist
Phonics booklet



There are several websites that we recommend: 

Hungry Little Minds
Small Talk
Parent guide to Read Write Inc.

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The following information can be made available upon request; please contact the School Office for further information.

  • how the EYFS is being provided at St Olave’s;
  • how parents and carers can access more information about the EYFS;
  • the range and type of activities and experiences provided for children;
  • the daily routines;
  • how parents and carers can share learning at home;
  • how the setting supports children with SEN or disabilities;
  • food and drinks provided for children;
  • details of policies and procedures including the procedure in the event that a parent/carer fails to collect a child and the procedure for dealing with the circumstance of a child going missing at, or away from, the setting;
  • staffing;
  • the name of the child’s teacher; and
  • an emergency contact number.