Our philosophy is happy and healthy children. We want children to have a fulfilled and adventurous day at The Ark, whether it’s their first small steps as a toddler or as they practice their football skills in the garden after a day in the classroom.
At The Ark every child will be treated as an individual, encouraged and guided to develop in a safe, caring and stimulating environment. We want children to have fun and learn, with staff who are motivated and dedicated to caring for them and parents who are confident that their children are in good hands and having a great day.
* Full day care for children aged from 6 months to 5 years in full-time or part-time placements.
* The Zone Breakfast and Afterschools Club – wraparound care for school children aged 4yrs upwards with drop off and collection service.
* A holiday club at The Zone during Easter and Summer holidays – see Latest News for more details.
At The Ark your children will have a balanced routine of activity, rest and relaxation. The care we provide will allow your children to develop and play at their own pace, nurturing their natural abilities and encouraging them to realise their potential.
The Great Outdoors
We’re passionate about the importance of the outdoors and our large gardens are just one of things that make us unique. With almost an acre of land bordered by natural landscaping in a semi-rural setting, we have an abundance of green space for children to enjoy.
With so much space we can offer a wide range of outdoor activities; football or perhaps basketball for the more energetic, a sensory garden for curious toddlers or our very own vegetable and plant patch for budding gardeners!
Healthy Happy Children
Healthy children need the right levels of exercise and nutrition. At The Ark all our meals will be freshly prepared on site by our chef, using locally sourced ingredients where possible.
We encourage children to try foods from around the world, and each week we allocate a day to a different country. Our menus change seasonally so we can make the most of fresh local produce.
At The Ark the security and wellbeing of your children are our number 1 priority. We have a number of security measures in place, including a buzzer entry system and CCTV in all rooms.
The Ark Team
We are committed to employing staff who share our vision and will care for, stimulate and inspire your children.
Our nursery is graduate led and all our staff are fully qualified, we also encourage staff to further their knowledge and expertise through the completion of relevant higher qualifications such as QCF Level 5 Diploma in Leadership for Children’s Care, Learning and Development (Management). We encourage, provide and support training and Continuous Professional Development. All staff go through a rigorous vetting procedure and thorough induction.
However, a caring and nurturing environment can only be provided by staff who have a genuine interest in children. Our staff don’t just have the necessary qualifications, they also have the interest, motivation and dedication to ensure that The Ark is a great experience for your children and you.
We understand the pressures facing families trying to juggle work, childcare and busy lifestyles so we’ll do all we can you ensure that childcare at The Ark caters for your individual needs. We aim to provide wraparound care that can accommodate your changing needs as children progress through nursery to primary school. We will always endeavour to work with you and take the stress out of your daily childcare arrangements.
We follow the Cirricular Guidance for Pre-School Education in Northern Ireland, and Early Years Foundation Stage. These cover 6 areas of learning:
• Personal, Social and Emotional Development
• Physical Development and Movement
• The Arts
• Language Development
• Early Mathematical Experiences
• The World Around Us
Although these are specifically geared towards pre-school, we apply these across the nursery to all our planning and activities. We have also researched other curriculum models and applied best practise to our setting.
Our staff have specific training in relation to the age groups and needs of the children they care for, for example our staff in the baby rooms have a working knowledge of Makaton, an effective language learning programme that offers a structured multi- modal approach to teaching communication, language and literacy skills through the use of vocabulary and gestures.