Behind the Inspection Rating: ‘Little Renoirs' get their needs met


Wentworth Nursery School and Children's Centre | Nursery school inspection | January 2013

For most people, nursery school art sessions conjure up images of stamps carved out of potato and daubings made by tiny paint-covered fingers. At Wentworth Nursery School, however, art takes on a more cultured air as three- to five-year-olds armed with palettes and watercolours recreate the work of Renoir and Turner.

“We have very high expectations,” says head teacher Carolyn Maples. “Most of the time the children meet or exceed those expectations if they are given time, patience and skilful support. We show them examples of the artists’ work and encourage them to look at the colours and shapes.

“Children are fantastically able to recreate and by doing it they learn observation skills, develop their language skills by describing what they see and develop their small motor skills. They learn science too because they are mixing water and colour to create different thicknesses and colours.”

Record of excellence
Ofsted was clearly impressed. “Their paintings in the style of Renoir, Turner and African artists are exceptional,” Ofsted reported in Wentworth’s most recent inspection, the fifth in a row to award Wentworth an outstanding grade. This unwavering track record of excellence is made all the more impressive when you discover that Wentworth’s children have a higher than average level of special educational needs and speak a total of 27 different languages.

The nursery handles these needs by thinking car

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