Children start school in small groups on a part time basis. This will enable them to familiarise themselves with school routines and get to know their peer group and the teaching staff in a calm, quiet atmosphere.
This part of the school is called the Reception Classes; however the term for the learning stage is ‘Early Years Foundation Stage’ or EYFS, which we shorten to Foundation Stage. It is a natural progression from pre-school work.
During the summer term before your child starts school, teaching staff will visit the local pre-schools and nurseries to talk to the staff, and to play and work with the children. All children will be offered a full time place. However if your child is one of the younger age group and parents feel they are unable to cope with a full day, parents may request an initial part-time school day until their child is ready for full time. This enables your child to benefit from the same teaching as all the others in the year group, ensuring their education does not fall behind.
The Foundation Stage pupils have their own area, securely separated by a bright coloured fence from the surrounding area. It has a large outdoor classroom, part covered in bark and part slabbed, which provides children opportunities for learning on a larger scale. The whole of the indoors and outdoors are used as a learning environment. The outdoor classroom provides children with opportunities for finding bugs and insects, caring for plants, sand and water play, and other activities more associated with indoors such as reading, mathematical challenges and developing phonics knowledge.
They also have supervised access to their large play area where they can develop their muscles and coordination on bikes and other equipment, and a large grassed area.
The children in Reception Classes follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum which encompasses all learning from age 0 to 5 in four themes. These underpin the whole of a child's development and are: A Unique Child, Positive Relationships, Enabling Environments and Learning and Development.
'Learning and Development' is itself divided into 7 more areas. All children’s progress is constantly assessed in these areas which are:
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Communication and Language
Understanding the World
Expressive Arts and Design