For children in our Nursery and Reception Classes – Aged 2 – 5
Children need opportunities to move and to explore their surroundings through all their senses, to talk with adults and to play with them, engaging with new people and situations, and learning new skills. Our Early Years builds on children’s experiences at home. We use Developmental Matters (non-statutory guidance material) to support implementing the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage. There are seven areas of learning and development. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These three areas, the prime areas, are:
• communication and language;
• physical development; and
• personal, social and emotional development.
We also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied. The specific areas are:
• understanding the world; and
• expressive arts and design.
The areas of learning are delivered through planned, purposeful play with a balance of adult-led and child-initiated activities. Learning takes place both in the classroom and outdoors. Staff work flexibly, based on the level of development of individual children. Each half term topics are chosen that will develop skills and understanding in each of the seven areas. Progress is closely monitored by our experienced Early Years staff and recorded in individual pupil profiles and Learning Journeys. At the end of the foundation stage an EYFS profile will be completed for each child and shared with their parents/carers.
Basic number concepts are taught. The phonics programme Letters and Sounds is used to develop pre-reading skills and when ready, children are introduced to the reading scheme. For children in Reception Class, mastery of their ‘key word’ list will provide a firm foundation for further development of reading and writing skills. Children borrow books for reading at home and the use of reading diaries / contact books maintains good channels of communication between home and school, which is vital in order to re-enforce learning advances made at this age.