Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum
During the early years, children learn through play. Throughout the Foundation Stage, emphasis is on learning through purposeful play activities and quality teaching. Foundation stage provision is based upon the seven areas of learning.
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
One of the most important aspects of a child’s development is how they interact and relate to those around them, both adults and children. We try to foster and promote an atmosphere of caring, self control and co-operation. Children are encouraged to talk about their problems and find solutions together. We understand the importance of a child’s self-esteem in the learning process and we work with each child to promote the development of their self-esteem.
Communication and Language
Speaking and listening skills are encouraged and developed throughout the Foundation Stage. Talk, which arises during play, develops appropriate vocabulary and language. Children are always encouraged to talk about their experiences and interests. Children are given 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.
Children are given frequent opportunities for their physical development. Children can choose to play with large and small scale construction toys. Children have a PE session in the school hall in Nursery in their school uniform and Reception children will change into their PE kit. We also place great importance on our sand, water and play dough areas. These areas provide excellent opportunities for children to increase their manipulation skills. These areas change their role to follow the children’s interests. All these activities encourage children’s imaginations to develop and they love working together in these areas. As an extension to indoor physical activities children have access to a well-equipped outdoor area where bicycles and wheelbarrows help promote confidence, balance and an awareness of space.
Children enjoy a range of rhyme, rhythm and other sound awareness activities. A quiet reading area is provided and children are encouraged to look at books, tell stories to each other, recite nursery rhymes and handle and care for books correctly. They will begin to learn high frequency words and develop strategies for decoding words. Regular opportunities are provided for children to choose to write.
A lot of early counting skills are gained through singing number Songs and rhymes. These skills are supplemented in our Maths Area with a selection of games, activities and resources. These explore areas such as matching and sorting, ordering, shape recognition, counting and number sequencing and pattern recognition. Most mathematical activities occur naturally throughout the room. We count pieces of fruit and cups at snack time, cut cakes and pizzas into halves and quarters, match cups and plates in the kitchen, complete tricky jigsaws and make our own pictures from a variety of shapes! By relating these simple activities to our everyday life, children come naturally to an understanding of early maths concepts.
Understanding the World
We love to go outside whatever the weather! Our own outdoor play area is used in a variety of ways for digging, planting, watering and watching things grow. We encourage children to make observations about the world around them and to be aware of changing seasons and weather. Visits from people of different occupations also extend the children's learning. Areas for sand and water allow children to explore the properties of wet and dry sand, water and ice. They handle natural materials such as dough, clay, stones and shells. Children are encouraged to construct models using a variety of wooden and plastic blocks. Every child has the opportunity to use ICT equipment, including simple computer games to promote mouse control and support learning. Everyone enjoys baking and tasting different types of food. We like to bake as often as we can.
Expressive Arts and Design
Most children love role play. We have a range of exciting role play areas which change throughout the year for the children to explore. These areas reflect the children’s interests. All children are encouraged to use a variety of materials and tools to create and represent what they see, hear and feel. Music is an important part of our daily sessions. Children are encouraged to develop a love of simple songs and nursery rhymes and are able to accompany themselves on a range of percussion instruments.