Statement of Intent
Every child deserves the best possible start in life. In the Early Years we welcome them into our school family recognising that each child is unique and equal. We give them the tools to make friends, encouraging kindness and care for each other.
We observe what the children can do and support them to fulfil their potential celebrating the wonderful things they learn. Children are encouraged to become independent learners through the provision of a balance of child initiated and adult led experiences.
Through play our children explore the world around them and develop their learning, encouraging a sense of awe and wonder. They build up ideas and learn how to control themselves and understand the need for rules. They have opportunities to think creatively and use their imagination alongside other children and on their own.
We provide a practical, hands on stimulating curriculum that engages all children through carefully planned activities. The dedicated staff work together having an input in planning and assessing the children ensuring they have the best possible start to school.
What do we want Children to Gain from Their Time in Early Years?
We want children to…
- Be provided with experiences which appeal to children with all learning styles.
- Encourage them to become self-motivated and independent learners to make positive and healthy choices.
- Promote self-esteem and independence.
- Encourage curiousity and foster a love for learning.
- Become equipped with the skills and knowledge required to move on to the National Curriculum in Year 1.
How we Implement
The content of the curriculum is set out within the Revised Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) document. Guidance is given on effective learning and teaching through the seven areas:
Prime Areas of Learning:
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Communication and Language
Specific Areas of Learning:
Understanding the World
Expressive Arts and Design
All areas are delivered through a balance of adult led and child initiated activities. Within each of these areas there are developmental bands which show the knowledge, skills, understanding and attitudes that children need to learn during the EYFS in order to achieve the Early Learning Goals.
Children’s Characteristics of Effective Learning are all interconnected with the prime and specific areas of learning. The ways in which children engage with other people and their environment – playing and exploring, active learning and creating and thinking critically will observed and underpin learning and development across all areas and will support the child to remain an effective and motivated learner.
Foundation stage operates from a lovely, cosy log cabin. There is an outdoor area with a covered area ideal for use in any weather. Teachers and teaching assistants work together to manage classroom based activities and free-flow.
We use the revised EYFS, Development Matters, and the Floppy’s phonics document to support our planning. In Foundation Stage, planning is carried out on a short-term, daily basis. A termly overview plan is used to give a view of what is going to be taught. The outdoors is seen as an essential part of our teaching and learning space and is included in short term plans.
The teaching and learning of phonics is absolutely critical to children’s schooling and to their future prospects as readers and writers. It sits at the heart of all that we do across Early Years and Key Stage 1, and works most effectively as part of a joined-up relationship with parents. We use Floppy’s phonics a Systematic Synthetic phonics programme supported by dedicated reading books, songs and further online teaching materials.
How we Assess Impact
All aspects of our Foundation Stage provision are based on a secure understanding of the needs of the children. We believe that this understanding can only come from good quality observational assessments undertaken by sensitive practitioners.
When the children first start in Foundation Stage 2, they are ‘baselined’ to be able to gain an understanding of where the children are in terms of their development and next steps. During the school day, a variety of methods are used to record observations. Each child has a learning journey. Observations can take the form of notes, pictures and children’s work.
Our Early Years co-ordinator is Mrs Goodswen.