At Firs Farm, the Early Years provision we offer aims to get the children settled and happy within the learning environment, ensuring the development of the whole child is at the forefront of our agenda. Whilst ensuring each individual’s needs, are catered for in an inclusive and safe way, preparing them for the pathway into Year 1.
The Reception curriculum follows The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Statutory Framework, which was updated and came into effect from September 2014. Together with the overall principles and commitments from the Framework, we aim to meet the standards as described in the whole school vision. We ensure each child entering Reception is well supported, making progress and their overall development in all areas is prioritised.
We have an efficient and well supported settling in programme. We aim to prepare your child for Reception through stay and play sessions in school, meet the teacher and home visits. Once settled in the environment, we offer opportunities for the children to begin their learning through a balance of child initiated play and adult led activities.
Guidance on the EYFS Framework can be found at www.foundationyears.org.uk. As part of the requirements for learning and development, we focus our teaching on the 7 areas of learning:
Communication and Language
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Understanding the World
Expressive Arts and Design
We plan our learning environments around these 7 areas, ensuring the children are offered opportunities to extend their knowledge. For example the small world area may have resources linked to their topic story to promote oral storytelling and role play for their literacy skills.
A typical day in Reception would be a balance of child initiated play inside the classroom and in the outside area, with various adult led activities throughout the day, as well as focused carpet sessions for Literacy and Numeracy. We have PE sessions twice weekly and teaching opportunities on our termly topic.
All classrooms are set up with free flow Literacy and Maths areas, a small world and construction area, there is opportunity for creative and malleable play and a book corner and role play area. As well as interchanging spaces to meet the objectives for Understanding the world and Communication and Language. Children also have the opportunity to use the outside area, where a variety of activities are set up daily for the children to freely choose what to do. This allows for the children to develop their Physical Development, through the use of bikes and physical equipment.
The curriculum map summarises the key topics followed and how they link to some of the 7 areas of learning. For Literacy, we use Letters and Sounds to teach phonics in conjunction with Jolly Phonics, a scheme which uses actions and songs to teach children the letter sounds. This is taught alongside weekly handwriting and writing tasks. Maths lessons are taught daily with an objective for the week, these are revisited again throughout the year to consolidate children’s learning and move them on.
We use the Development Matters document to support children’s learning and development and make judgements to see if they are emerging, expected or exceeding the age related expectation. We have ongoing assessments of the children through the use of Focus weeks, short observations and evidence gathering in Wow books. All of which we value and share with parents throughout the year. An EYFS Profile is completed for each child at the end of the year based on the Early Learning Goals to give an indication of their knowledge, skills and understanding.
To support our teaching and learning we promote the needs of the children in line with the overarching principles of the Statutory Framework as seen below:
A Unique child
Learning and development
Every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and/or carers;
Children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates. The framework covers the education and care of all children in EY provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.
The children in Reception will also work on developing their skills and confidence within all the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’.