☰ Early Years

Early Years

Our Nursery and Reception classes are housed within a charming Victorian building at our Princes Avenue site in central Muswell Hill. 

The Early Years philosophy at Norfolk House draws on a unique combination of educational pedagogy, tailored with the vibrancy of our local area of North London and the diversity of the families within our school. We have combined this with wider educational theories that underpin our practice, including traditional Early Years teaching such as Montessori education, the schools of Reggio Emilia and Frobel education, as well as innovative British educational research such as Communication Friendly Spaces (Elizabeth Jarman) and Sustained Shared Thinking (Iram Siraj).

Young children learn best from direct experiences and activities, which interest them and start from their existing knowledge and experience. The activities we offer at Norfolk House are richly inspiring and are linked by a series of challenges, social interaction and active participation.

As a private school and nursery, it is our underpinning philosophy to ensure all children have high levels of adult engagement both to scaffold children’s play-based learning and when teaching children directly. For the size of our classes, we have double the number of qualified Teachers than local primary schools and in comparison to day nurseries, twice as many staff in order to give all children the adult attention they need. 

With our shared garden space and light-filled classrooms, it is through play, both indoors and outdoors, that children develop intellectually, creatively, physically, socially and emotionally. Alongside child-initiated play, children at Norfolk House benefit from direct teaching, where learning objectives are individual to each child’s next steps of learning. The development of children’s language is central to all the experiences we offer as a strong grasp of language is the key to developing relationships with peers, as well as being the main indicator of academic success in later school years. We have a number of onsite educational programs to support children’s language development in the Nursery including a program designed by Speech Therapists for delivery in nurseries that is delivered by our trained staff. 

Through the experiences we offer across our Early Years department, we aim to promote children’s well-being, learning and development, and provide the foundation for later success in the National Curriculum and in life beyond our school. 

As educators, we love to share with parents where our practice comes from and have included some links if you would like to find out about the background to our teaching methods.

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