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What is The Nest?


The nest is a special space in the heart of our school, providing a safe and welcoming environment to encourage and develop confidence and self-esteem as a learner. Each focused learning group decides on their own bird-themed name, which is used for them and by them during their time with us in The Nest. It is important to us that each member feels part of a team, where we will also recognise and celebrate each other’s different personalities, strengths, interests and achievements.


What are focused learning groups?


These groups provide an opportunity to focus in on and address any educational, social and emotional needs, which may be impacting on a child’s learning, within a small and nurturing group setting.


Through a variety of different learning and support strategies including; creative writing, mindfulness, strategic problem solving, art, drama, cooking and gardening - our aim is to enhance academic and social development and improve overall confidence. There is a specific focus on developing resilience, learning self-care and self-respect, together with taking pride in behaving well and achieving.


The Nest team will work closely with the year group staff to ensure that, where possible, there is cohesion with the topics covered in the school core curriculum.


Who are the staff?


The Nest is overseen by Mrs Valentine and run by a team of Learning Support Assistants who have received additional, specific training for this role.

A typical Nest afternoon


Sessions are planned to meet the needs of individual children in the group but will include some of the following:

  • Class curriculum based work sessions (in line with the curriculum that other class members are following)
  • Mindfulness
  • Directed individual or group work and activities
  • Toast time!
  • Story time
  • Structured games (specifically chosen to promote social, academic or emotional skills)


What the children think?


‘If I have had a bad day the Nest makes me feel happy, I know there are always people there to talk to’


‘The Nest was helpful to make stronger friendships; it makes me feel safe in a small group. I really enjoyed the science and making slime’


‘Being in a small group helped me to feel confident sharing our ideas, the fun atmosphere helped my confidence and putting my hand up’


‘I feel special that I get to go to the Nest, I feel happy in the Nest because it is comfortable and relaxed. It helps me to be in the classroom’