New nursery welcomes its first children

The Ark Nursery at Thomas Bullock CofE Primary Academy

The Ark Nursery at Thomas Bullock CofE Primary Academy - Credit: Kate Morfoot Jungle PR

A new village nursery has welcomed its first children after launching last month.

The Ark Nursery, which is based at the Thomas Bullock Church of England Primary Academy, officially launched in January.

Welcoming children from the age of two through to the start of their school career, the nursery is offering either 26 full-time or 52 part-time places to children in the Shipdham area, near Dereham.

Children from The Ark have access to the Forest School facilities at Thomas Bullock

Children from The Ark have access to the Forest School facilities at Thomas Bullock - Credit: Kate Morfoot Jungle PR

Shannon O'Sullivan, headteacher at Thomas Bullock, said: "The Ark is heavily committed and invested in providing outstanding early years provisions for all.

"Our pupils benefit hugely from being an important part of our wider school and they enjoy regular forest school, music and PE lessons."

Debbie Marjoram, early years lead at the school, said: "The Ark is an exciting new provision being brought into the local community.

Pupils from The Ark Nursery at Thomas Bullock CofE Primary 

Pupils from The Ark Nursery at Thomas Bullock CofE Primary - Credit: Kate Morfoot/Jungle PR

"We work in close partnership with our families so they are actively engaged and involved in their child's academic journey."

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The nursery will also offer 15 and 30 hour funding and will not charge for the lunchtime period.

Mrs O'Sullivan added: "We focus on developing confident and independent children who can make informed choices and decisions for themselves, whilst developing a caring, considerate and responsible attitude towards other people and their environment.

The Ark Nursery has opened in Shipdham

The Ark Nursery has opened in Shipdham - Credit: Kate Morfoot

“Our children have a stable, consistent early years team of staff with expertise, training and experience. 

"The nursery children have their own classroom and learning outdoor environment but also join afternoon continuous provision sessions in an EYFS base to support socialisation, transitioning and school readiness. 

"They have daily phonics and number alongside their EYFS curriculum which is child-led."

Children at The Ark Nursery, a nursery in Shipdham

Children at The Ark Nursery, a nursery in Shipdham - Credit: Jungle PR

Oliver Burwood, chief executive of Diocese of Norwich Education and Academies Trust said: “The benefits of a school nursery for children and families are many and this is why we have added this type of provision to so many of our schools across DNEAT. 

“Thomas Bullock Church of England Primary Academy is rated as a good school with a quality EYFS provision that we are pleased to be able to extend out to younger children.

"We know that children make good progress because adults provide lots of opportunities for them to explore, learn and develop across all areas of learning.”