When children start school during the year of their fifth birthday, they enter or continue the Foundation Stage which is from birth until the end of their Reception year. We welcome children from a variety of different playgroups, pre-schools and nurseries from the surrounding area.

When the children start in September, they start on a part-time basis, this enables them to discover their environment and make new friends in small personal groups aiding the transition into school. They are usually attending full time by week 3 or 4. We are aware of children’s different needs, however, so this part-time basis may be extended if appropriate. Our main aim in the first term is to ensure the children are happily settled into school.

The children’s time is equally spent between child initiated play and adult directed activities, working towards early learning goals. We look for a balance in six areas of learning which are:

  • Communication and language
  • Physical development
  • Personal, social and emotional development
  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the world
  • Expressive arts and design

The main emphasis of learning will be on skills not on content.  The children will be encouraged to become active, independent learners.  The framework is designed to be really flexible so that staff can follow your child’s unique needs and interests. Children in the EYFS learn through playing and exploring, being active and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside.

We have two Foundation Stage classes who share a learning zone. The teaching team consists of two full time teachers and two full time teaching partners.

We look to develop a close link with the family of each child. If you have any queries or concerns about school procedures, then please do not hesitate to speak to the teaching team.

Assessment

Assessment in Reception takes the form of observations and the children will not be aware they are being assessed.  The assessment enables the teacher to establish the development level of each child and is used to inform the planning of future work.  It builds on the fact that every child enters Reception with their own particular set of experiences, knowledge and skills and ensures that teachers can build effectively upon that foundation.

At the end of your child’s Reception year teachers complete an assessment which is known as the EYFS Profile.  This assessment is based on what they have observed over a period of time.  Your knowledge about your child’s learning and development is also important so let your child’s teacher know what they do at home; you can do this on our home learning stars.  All of this information is then collected and used to make a judgement about your child’s progress and if they have reached ‘expected levels’ at the end of Reception year, these expectations are called the Early Learning Goals. 

Reading

The children will be following the governments Letters and Sounds phonic programme.  When your child has learnt the initial letter sounds and can blend these sounds to read basic words they will be given a reading book to further develop their reading skills.  Children who have stories read to them regularly usually learn to read more quickly than those who do not.  However, it is not a race and all children progress at their own rate.  They will do pre-reading activities until they are ready to read and they will have stories read to them daily in school.   When your child is reading they will bring home reading books and a reading diary for you to comment in.  Research proves that children who read regularly at home make much more rapid progress in their ability to read.