St Martin's Church of England Primary School

‘Faith and Endeavour - Living and Learning together’


Nurturing Kent Programme

St Martin’s CE Primary is currently taking part in an 18 month training programme called the National Nurturing Schools Programme (NNSP) run by Nurtureuk for Kent County Council.

The NNSP is an 18-month journey, with each school developing a bespoke whole-school approach to embed a nurturing culture. It supports Quality First Teaching and Learning and promotes healthy outcomes for children and young people, focusing on social and emotional needs and development alongside academic learning. The programme enables schools to gain recognition for achieving a higher level of nurturing provision. At St Martin’s School, we are currently collecting evidence to enable us to receive this recognition.

The project is being led by St Martin’s nurture team which includes Mrs Ames (SENCO), Miss White (FLO) and Mrs Whyte (TA).


What is Nurture?

The concept of nurture highlights the importance of social environments and their influence on social emotional skills, wellbeing and behaviour.

The nurturing approach offers a range of opportunities for children and young people to develop the social and emotional skills to do well at school and builds their resilience to help them cope with the trials and tribulations of life, for life. The programme focuses on recognising good practice and developing this further based on the Six Principles of Nurture.


The 6 Principles of Nurture

1.       Children's learning is understood developmentally

2.       The classroom offers a safe base

3.       The importance of nurture for the development of wellbeing

4.       Language is a vital means of communication

5.       All behaviour is communication

6.       The importance of transition in children's lives

Ref: Lucas,S., Insley,K. and Buckland,G. (2006) Nurture Group Principles and Curriculum Guidelines Helping Children to Achieve, The Nurture Group Network.

Our School Nurturing Programme

The Nurturing Schools Programme focuses on developing a whole school approach to nurture.  Much of the programme is embodied in the ethos of St Martin’s, our value of compassion and our Jigsaw PHSE programme.  In addition, we offer additional nurture support such as ELSA, Draw and Talk, morning soft landings, lunchtime nurture group and nurture sessions for specific reasons. Children may access these additional sessions for a number of reasons:

  • Friendship difficulties – keeping/making friends
  • Quiet, shy, withdrawn
  • Find it hard to listen to others or join in
  • Disruptive towards others
  • Find it hard to accept losing a game
  • Find it hard to share and take turns
  • Find it difficult to settle into class
  • Bullying
  • Low self esteem
  • Bereavement
  • Family illness or break up 


The Draw and Talk, ELSA and nurture sessions may help children in different ways:

  • To join in
  • To settle
  • To listen
  • To concentrate
  • To share and take turns
  • To accept losing a game
  • To build up friendships with their classmates

Ways You Can Work With Us To Support Your Child

Attend parents’ evenings and keep in touch with your child’s teacher about any changes that may affect their behaviour in school.

Attend school events such as class collective worships. The children tell us they feel proud and happy when they see their parents, carers and grandparents in school.

Support your child with homework and encourage them to talk to you about what they have been learning. When children share with you at home it enhances their learning and gives them confidence to succeed in the classroom.

Encourage your child to talk about emotions and feelings with you – the more open we can be about how we are feeling the less likely we are to bottle things up and become withdrawn, angry or depressed.

Beech Nurture Class

St Martin's has a nurture class which selected children attend. This runs in the Beech Nurture Classroom each afternoon. A small group of five to six children attend each term. Children are selected for the class following discussions with their class teacher, parents and Boxall Assessment.

The class is run following the six principles of nurture and sessions include time spent specific topics, snack time, sensory activities, child initiated play, adult led activities, games and circle time.

Nurture Group Policy

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