We provide children with all year round care, in a safe, stimulating environment where they receive exceptional nurturing from a team of highly qualified, experienced staff.

Situated in spacious leafy grounds, our Pre-Reception and Reception classes have been designed with the needs of young children in mind. From their first days in Pre-Reception, our aim for all our pupils is to foster in them a love of learning which will remain with them throughout their lives.

We currently take children into Pre-Reception from the term they turn 3. From September 2022, we will welcome children in the academic year in which they turn four. We provide all-year round nursery education (holiday club outside term-time) with the same, highly-qualified and experienced, permanent staff.

We encourage learning through play and practical activities, inviting the children to develop a lasting curiosity about why and how things work, both inside and outdoors. In the Early Years Foundation Stage, we see both our inside and outside environment as one learning space.

Great facilities and specialist staff


Pre-Reception and Reception share the assembly hall, sports courts and field with Years 1 to 6. They benefit from their own, designated garden and in addition, enjoy using the College Music Centre. Specialist staff provide Music, French and PE and the children make weekly trips to the Prep library. As they move up the school, they can look forward to shared use of further facilities including the science laboratories, technology rooms, ICT suites, playing fields and swimming pool.


It is important to us that we integrate all ages whenever possible; encouraging a community ‘family’ spirit and the desire to look out for each other, both big and small. We want all our pupils to feel happy, safe and valued from the moment they start at St Joseph’s.

Our Pre-Reception and Reception pupils follow the Statutory EYFS Curriculum, working towards the Early Learning Goals. Teachers plan creatively to ensure a broad curriculum in which children are inspired to learn from a range of rich experiences. Each child is known as an individual, their interests and personalised needs being at the heart of learning.


In Pre-Reception, children take their first exciting steps into school life. Social, language and physical skills are rapidly developing, and are nurtured through play and game based activities. Underpinning the curriculum is an emphasis on promoting the Characteristics of Effective Learning: play and exploration; active learning and critical thinking. These are attributes which enable children to flourish as curious, resilient, independent learners.

Reception builds on a firm foundation in Pre-Reception. Inspired by a balance of play and more formal, adult-led learning, children’s Reading, Writing and Mathematical understanding takes off and soars. Children are encouraged to be active learners who do not give up when faced with challenge and are willing to have a go at new activities or experiences.

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