They will learn through a balance of adult-directed and child-initiated play. Children will receive support from skilful practitioners, who have the knowledge of when to intervene and give guidance. This support will help children to make significant progress in their learning. Our practitioners are aware of how each child learns and supports them with their next steps and personalised learning. Each child’s behaviour and attitudes will be supported through our knowledge of each individual child. The children will have opportunities to explore the seven areas of learning on their own, with their peers and with adults. Staff will monitor closely children’s development in the prime areas of learning and put next steps in place to support any gaps, our ‘notice and focus’.
Children are provided with plenty of time to engage in ‘exploration’ throughout the variety of carefully planned experiences to engage and challenge them in the provision. The curriculum is planned for the inside and outside classrooms and equal importance is given to learning in both areas. We use a cross-curricular approach to enable all aspects of the children’s development to promote sustained thinking and active learning.
The timetable is carefully structured so that children have directed teaching in English, maths and phonics everyday with daily afternoon sessions focus on their other prime and specific areas of learning.
They will learn through the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’: Creating and thinking critically, Playing and exploring and active learning.
The EYFS is based on four overarching principles. The principles underpin all that practitioners are required to do.
The Unique Child.
Principle: Every child is a competent learner from birth who can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
Principle: Children learn to be strong and independent from a base of loving and secure relationships with parents and/or a key person.
Principle: The environment plays a key role in supporting and extending children’s development and learning.
The learning experiences within our Early Years are linked to the seven areas of learning and development within the EYFS. These areas are split into three prime areas and four specific areas. The three prime areas are those which the children should develop first and are considered most essential for the healthy development and future learning of our children. These include:
Personal, Social and Emotional Development – involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
Communication and Language – involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
Physical Development – involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.
As children grow and make progress in the prime areas, this will help them to naturally develop skills within the four specific areas. These are:
Literacy – the early teaching of literacy involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children are given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest.
Mathematics – the early teaching of mathematics involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and describing shapes, spaces, and measures.
Understanding the World – this involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
Expressive Arts and Design – this involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.
Reading is at the heart of our curriculum through daily phonics teaching and story times. Children follow the rigorous and highly successful Read, Write Inc program to ensure they make good progress in their reading.
We follow the Maths Mastery approach, using White Rose Maths, with an emphasis on studying key skills of number, calculation and shape so that pupils develop a deep understanding and the acquisition of mathematical language. Pupils learn through games and tasks using concrete manipulatives which are then rehearsed and applied to their own learning during exploration. These early mathematical experiences are carefully designed to help pupils remember the content they have been taught and to support them with integrating their new knowledge across the breadth of their experiences and into larger concepts.
Our inclusive approach means that all children learn together, but we have a range of additional interventions and support to enhance and scaffold children who may not be reaching their potential or moving on children who are doing very well.