Discover answers to our most asked questions below.
Our curriculum was designed by the Ark Start early years experts with input from across the Ark network and based on child development evidence. We’ve also taken advice from some of the country’s leading experts and been influenced by a number of international approaches including Reggio Emilia, Montessori and Forest School, as well as emerging evidence on child development.
We don’t currently run a language programme.
Every child will spend time outdoors every day. We aim to ensure that, in line with NHS guidance, our children our physically active for at least three hours a day. We also know that outdoor learning provides opportunities for our children that the indoor environment cannot match so we make sure we are outside every day, whatever the weather.
We do lots of different activities outside, including physical activities, games, planting, Forest School and learning about the local community.
High quality nurseries are much more than childcare. Attending a nursery with well qualified staff like Ark Start offers numerous benefits to both children and their families. Here are some of the key advantages of a high quality nursery education:
Professional Guidance: Trained early childhood educators in nurseries provide age-appropriate guidance and support to children. They understand child development and can identify any potential challenges or developmental delays, ensuring that appropriate support is provided to parents
We think children should experience awe and wonder and strive to create many opportunities for this through the curriculum. Enrichment opportunities include offsite visits, for example to the farm or to the fire station, and onsite experiences such as baking and hatching ducklings and butterflies.
We make sure we go offsite at least once every half term. See calendar of events LINK
No. We assess our children regularly to understand what their next steps should be and share this with families regularly. We will also complete a 2 Year Check, and a Before School assessment which ensures a smooth transition from nursery to school.
We are taking part in a research project to understand the impact of a high quality early education on young children. We are undertaking this project in partnership with the Mercers and Education Policy Institute. This means that we share anonymised data with the researchers who then use the data to better understand the characteristics of effective early education as well as the impact. We are excited about this project and its potential to have an impact on the early years sector more widely.
Our staff are trained to understand children’s development and work closely with families to understand where children are in their learning and what their next steps are. We invite parents in every term to discuss their child’s learning and families can ask to meet their child’s play partners at any time.
We invite parents in for formal meetings every term but you can speak to your play partner about your child at any time!
Our nurseries are about much more than childcare. Our team works together to ensure that every child has a joyful, engaging and secure nursery experience and leaves us ready to start school happily and confidently. We are driven by our values in everything we do: Aim High, Be Brave, Be Kind and Keep Learning.
Ark Start is at an exciting time in its evolution. We opened two nurseries in South London last year and aim to expand our reach over the coming years. As we expand, we are looking for Early Educators to join our founding team. We are looking for someone with a genuine passion for young children and with the skill, creativity, commitment and energy to deliver excellent provision at Ark Start John Archer.