The EYFS curriculum is made up of 7 areas of learning:
Starting school is a big step in every child’s life. At the Meadows we aim to offer an Early Years curriculum that will provide firm foundations upon which, the rest of a child’s education will be successfully based.
We strive to create stimulating environments both inside and outside, that promote language development, play-based learning opportunities, challenge, exploration, adventure and a love of learning. It is our intent that all our reception children will develop their skills physically, verbally, cognitively and emotionally in an environment which values all cultures, communities and people.
We aim for our children to be confident and independent learners, to believe in themselves and interact positively with others. We understand that child-initiated play is an integral part of learning, and this is at the heart of our early years’ curriculum. This is balanced with the correct mix of quality first teaching, effective modelling and adult directed tasks to ensures good outcomes for pupils. Warm and positive relationships between staff and children, consistent routines and strong relationships with parents are also key to ensuring our children have the best possible start to their school life and we aim to establish these right from the beginning.
At the Meadows we meet the welfare requirements identified in the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage and actively safeguard and promote the welfare of all our children. We have worked hard to create a ‘language rich’ environment through the use of songs, nursery rhymes, stories and quality conversations between adults and children.
The Early Years Team ensure that interactions with children are positive and support children to become confident communicators. Both our indoor and outdoor classrooms are able to be adapted in order to reflect the interests of the current reception cohort and promote a curiosity to learn.
Through focused PSHE sessions and daily modelling, all children are supported to work together as a team, manage their feelings as best they can and develop a sense of belonging to their school.
Children are guided to become early readers by the adults’ promoting books in a positive way, the introduction of ‘Drawing Club’ and the systematic teaching of phonics using ‘Little Wandle Revised Letters and Sounds’.
The involvement in the NCETM Mastering Number initiative and use of ‘White Rose’ resources are helping children to develop their mathematical thinking and this is achieved through a balance of direct teaching and child-led exploration. We want our children to be confident mathematicians who can apply what they have learnt to real life experiences.
Our reception children access their own outside space which has been designed to impact positively on their school day and teaches them that learning is not confined to the classroom. All children have the opportunity to connect with the natural world and have first-hand experiences of life and growth. The carefully selected resources provide opportunities to develop communication skills, creativity and imagination whilst also improving the children’s overall health, fitness levels, muscle strength and coordination. In addition, all children take part in weekly Forest School sessions.
Our Early Years curriculum is taught through topics which are enriched with classroom enhancements and where possible, trips or visitors.
Topics are supported by quality key texts, and these have been chosen carefully to encourage speech and language development as well as highlight diversity within our community. All planning, however, is flexible and responsive to children’s needs so plans can be changed and adapted depending on the children’s interests.
We understand the importance of parental engagement and value the role our families play in their children's education. We work hard to create strong partnerships between home and school, starting in the very first few weeks of term with home visits. Parents receive knowledge organisers each half term to keep them up to date with our learning in school, as well as the sharing of phonic videos, e-books, workshops and our on-line learning journey ‘Tapestry’ which can be used by families to share experiences from home. Individual parent consultations are organised over the year in addition to daily interactions at drop-off and pick-up times.
As part of the teaching and learning process, children are assessed in relation to the progress they have made since starting school and their attainment against the Early Learning Goals. These judgements are made on the basis of in-depth knowledge of the children acquired through on-going assessments. The assessments are used to inform planning and next steps in teaching and learning for all children throughout the year.
To find out more about EYFS at The Meadows Primary School, please feel free to speak to our EYFS Lead, Mrs Burns.