Our nursery ethos and curriculum has the Three Pillars of Sustainability at the core. True sustainability happens when social, economic, and environmental values are looked at holistically. This theory seemed to be the obvious starting point for building our own, unique curriculum.

Our activities, provocations, and environments consider all three aspects. From this, we are authentically embedding a life-long commitment to protecting our planet, while also enabling our children to reach the level of development expected by the end of the Reception Year.

We encourage our children to be respectful and care for their environment as a whole and more specifically local flora and fauna. We establish a social consciousness, with the children seeing themselves as a member of a community (whether it be their nursery pod, their family, their hometown, their country, or globally). Ensuring they care for others while developing their own voices and nurturing their own well-being. Finally, we instil an economic awareness. There is an expectation to look after resources at nursery and their environment around them and think about how we can reuse and recycle. We think about the cost to our pocket, the community, and the planet.

It makes sense for us to look at our curriculum through the framework of the growing year. Each month our planning is not only informed by the children’s interests, schemas and needs but also by what is happening in our onsite woodland garden, our kitchen garden at the Weald, the local parks, the beach, and our workshop. We model and encourage inclusion and a respect for the beliefs of others. We acknowledge festivals important to our families and the local community but in a non-consumerist way. We explore the messages behind these festivals, for example instead of Christmas we talk about how we can help people who are not as fortunate as we are. We celebrate the seasons and special days happening within the nature calendar.