Our Pre-school provision is available for children from the term they turn 3 until they start Reception.

Acorn Class is our Pre-school group. This class continues to build on the foundation skills children need in readiness for Reception. Children in this class are streamed with Reception children based on their academic abilities to ensure children are reaching their individual full potential. They continue to receive adult led carpet input sessions from our qualified teacher, who is supported by the early years key-workers. The majority of our children who have attended our nursery and pre-school, start reception being able to read and write simple sentences, independently.

Streamed Lessons

  • Maths
  • Literacy
  • Phonics

Lesson Focuses

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design
  • Physical Education
  • Music
  • French
  • Drama

Our class teachers work very hard to ensure all the children are settled and confident individuals. They support the children and encourage them to communicate their needs and wants and spend time helping the children to understand their own feelings and the feelings and wishes of others.

A Day in Acorn Class

8 - 8:30am – Breakfast and full day children arrival. Tinker time (free play)

8:30 - 8:40am – School day children arrive / Register.

8:40 - 8:55am – Adult led carpet input.

8:55 - 9:30am – Adult led activities / Child initiated learning / free flow

9:30 - 9:40am – Adult led carpet input. (Summer Term)

9:40 - 10:20am – Adult led activities / Child initiated learning / free flow (Summer Term)

10:20 - 10:30am – Tidy up time

10:30 - 10:45am – Snack time

10:45 - 11am – Outdoor playtime

11 – 12pm – Phonics

12 - 1:10pm – Lunch time

12:35 – 1:10pm Outdoor play.

1:10 - 1:15 – Register

1:15 - 1:30 – Adult led carpet input.

1:30 - 2:45 – Adult led activities / Child initiated learning / free flow

2:45 - 3pm – Tidy up time / Get ready to go home.

3 - 3:15pm – Story time

3:15 - 3:30pm – Home time / Snack time for full day children.

3:30 - 4:30pm – After School Extra curricular activity.

4:30 - 5pm – Tea time

5 - 6pm – Tinker time / Home time

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Pre-school Settling In

When settling the children in to Pre-school, we endeavour to make the transition as smooth as possible. We invite parents and child in for interview and a short play session, to meet with a senior member of the Early Years Team, to help us to get to know your child. From this meeting we make arrangements for further settling sessions either half days, late arrivals, incorporating staying for lunch and building to full days, if required.


All the adults in the unit will get to know your child, but they will be assigned a keyworker with whoever they have the best bond with. We have regular contact with parents through our tracking, monitoring and communication system, ‘Famly’, which allows us to share photographs and videos of children with their adult, privately.

Extra Curricular Activities

Each week the children have a dedicated PE session, introducing new skills and developing previous learning. They also have music lessons with a very inspirational and fully qualified Music Teacher. The children also have weekly French lessons, where they are exposed to and can explore the French language in fun and innovative ways.


The children experience a lot in our community as we regularly take the children on local walks, to the library, local shops and the park. Each term the children also experience a visitor in school or a trip out relating to our topics, such as Sea-life Centre for Under the Sea topic, or Chessington zoo for our zoo topic.

Transition to Reception

For our children in Pre-school, the transition to Reception is seamless, as the children are already familiar with the Reception Class teacher and classroom from our whole unit learning sessions and free-flow play.

For more information about Reception at Essendene Lodge please use the button below.


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