The Nurture Room, or ‘The Den’ as the children call it, is an invaluable resource at St Joseph’s. It provides a bridge between home and school; a place where children can feel safe and secure to explore their emotional and social wellbeing, learn about themselves, develop and grow.
The room is an essential part of the school’s inclusion and PSHE provision. Research shows that children’s learning is most effective when they have a sense of emotional wellbeing, good self-esteem and a feeling of belonging. The Nurture Room provides children with this opportunity, helping to develop maturity and resilience. The Nurture Room is a place of learning.
The philosophy of the Nurture Room is drawn from the six principles established by the work of Marjorie Boxall and others.
- Children’s learning is understood developmentally
- The classroom offers a safe base
- All behaviour is communication
- The importance of nurture for the development of well being
- Language is a vital means of communication
- The importance of transition in children’s lives.
Our highly experienced staff are specifically trained to work with individuals or small groups. Sessions are fun and informative, using activities and resources to motivate, engage and support the children. Before children attend nurture provision parents are informed by letter and are requested to sign a permission slip.
Which children attend Nurture Group?
Children may attend sessions in the Nurture Group for specific reasons, for example:
- Friendship difficulties – keeping/making friends
- Quiet, shy, withdrawn
- Find it hard to listen to others or join in
- Disruptive behaviours within school
- Poor relationships with adults in school
- Family illness or break-up
How will Nurture Group help my child?
Nurture Group will boost confidence and self-esteem and provide children with the extra help sometimes needed to improve social skills and independence for example:
- To join in
- To settle down and listen
- To develop concentration levels
- To share and take turns
- To build up resilience
- To build up friendships with their classmates
- It gives them a chance and helps to encourage a more positive profile among their peers and members of staff.
How long will my child be in Nurture Group for?
Sessions run five mornings per week and three afternoons per week depending upon the age of the children attending. Children attend for no longer than four terms. Nurture staff work closely with class teachers to ensure a smooth and successful transition back to class full time after this period.
Are parents/carers involved?
We like to think that our ‘door is always open’ and therefore welcome parent/carers to visit. Special event invitations are sent out to parents to join us at: open afternoons, craft days and end of term celebrations.
A typical session in Nurture Group
Children follow a structure and routine which includes group listening and speaking, work tasks, shared play and social skills. The group runs on consistency, positive reinforcement and praise.
A typical session in the Nurture Room would revolve around a theme or topic, with some focus work on basic skills linked to the national Curriculum. All pupils would understand what they were going to learn and have individual targets to work on during that session. Children have the opportunity to share good news, explore thoughts and feelings and work collaboratively on practical tasks.
Children work with new peers regularly, encouraging cooperation and confidence. Within the sessions, opportunities are tailored to the needs of the particular group and age range. Outdoor learning is an important part of the sessions. Children learn to share a snack together and the opportunity is given to choose and try new foods; even baking them first! Children learn to share and talk together with peers and adults. The children return to their own classes at the end of the session – either before lunchtime or before the end of the school day.
“ I love the Den!”
“ Can we come every day?”
“I want to stay forever”
“very good communication about these sessions”
“Absolutely brilliant, thank you for your hard work and keep it up”
“the staff are good at keeping parents informed”
“When I attended a session in ‘The Den’ I felt more enthusiastic about my child’s day in school”