ESMS Nursery

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Experience Extraordinary at ESMS Nursery

ESMS Nursery is a happy place to be, with highly qualified staff who nurture children as individuals and offer extraordinary opportunities to help them discover their unique potential. Our three-and four-year-olds spend their days exploring our beautiful grounds and having fun in light and airy playrooms.

Why parents choose us:


Attachment Led Nursery

ESMS is an attachment led Nursery where close relationships are formed between the staff and our children. We believe that no child is ordinary, so we take the time to get to know every child and discover their own individual interests and talents. 

The ethos in our Nursery is creative and hands-on. We nurture each child’s imagination, creativity and critical thinking through play based opportunities, encouraging the children to have fun, become increasingly independent and to think for themselves.


Highly Qualified Staff

It is our staff that make the Nursery such a special place to be. Together they inspire our children to become confident young people with good hearts and strong values.  Each of our Nursery rooms for four year olds has its own qualified teacher and we also have specialist staff for Music, Digital Learning, PE, Library and Forest Kindergarten.  This approach allows us to gently introduce children to a range of new experiences which are then built upon as they move through school.

Meet Mrs. Rhona Watt, Head of ESMS Nursery

" We have been blown away by how caring and conscientious the staff are. We know our little boy is in safe hands, with people who truly care about his safety, well-being and development. I honestly couldn’t recommend ESMS more."

Katy Kennedy, ESMS Nursery Parent


Our Wellbeing Programme

ESMS puts wellbeing at the centre of everything we do because we know that when children feel happy, safe and secure they are far more likely to thrive. We keep our teacher and pupil ratios small, and we take the time to build strong relationships with every child so that we get to know them personally and understand how to support and nurture them. 

An Environment that Enriches and Inspires Learning  

In addition to our bright, airy playrooms there are several other spaces to support our children and inspire their learning. Our sensory and nurture rooms stimulate the senses with their cloud lighting, bubble tubes, fibre optic spaghetti lights, mirror pebbles and light boxes.

Children learn to climb trees and enjoy sledging down our hill, in the winter. Running tracks, astro pitches and long jump pits are all available to our youngest children who love to watch the older children and try to copy their performances. Children also enjoy visiting our purpose built Early Years Library, Digital Learning spaces and PE halls. The allotment, adventure park, digging pit, mud kitchen and trails are also firm favourites with our youngest children. 

Our Nursery hours are 8.15am - 2.45pm (from August 2023) with wraparound care available.


Outdoor Learning

At ESMS, outdoor learning begins in Nursery because it is so important for child development. Our Forest Kindergarten sessions are led by Nursery staff who are fully qualified Forest Kindergarten Leaders and the children are taken for adventures and regular “Welly Walks” to explore the natural world around them. While the children are having fun exploring, they are also developing confidence, learning how to assess risk and building essential life skills, from problem solving and resilience to teamwork. 


Flexible Wraparound Care

Our wraparound care provides a balance of structured and free play for your child, before and after Nursery. Before Nursery care starts at 7.45am and after school care continues until 6pm.


1140 Council Funded Hours

ESMS Nursery is in partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council, which gives eligible parents living within the boundary of the City of Edinburgh, the opportunity to benefit from 1140 hours of Early Learning and Childcare (ELC) funding a year. This equates to 30 hours of funded childcare a week, during term time, from 8.15am to 2.45pm, Monday – Friday and includes a hot lunch in our bespoke early years dining facility. The funding can be accessed for the term starting after your child's third birthday but cannot be used for our wraparound care provision.

There are some caveats to the funding, and we are not permitted to offer new funded places to children who are, or whose parents are subject to immigration control, so please contact Cally Graham, in our Junior School Admissions Office, who will help you confirm whether you are eligible. For families who do not qualify for funding, we offer a special, subsidised fee model for our Nursery provision. Families interested in learning more should again contact Cally, who can provide you with further information.

Get in Touch

The best way to find out about our Nursery is to come along for a visit, or find out more about how a Pre-School year could benefit your child here. Contact our Admissions Manager, Cally Graham, to book a personal tour:


Wellbeing is at the heart of the education we provide

Wraparound Care

Flexible, wraparound childcare solutions to suit each family’s needs

Outdoor Learning

Outdoor learning in one of the largest outdoor Nursery play spaces in Edinburgh

Preparation for School

Preparing children for a smooth transition from Nursery to Primary 1