Early Years Foundation Stage
“Children are the people they grow into tomorrow,
only as they live today.”
(Democracy and Education (1916) by John Dewey)
Early Years Vision
Our children will be nurtured physically, mentally and spiritually. Together we will create a safe and stimulating environment, which supports the growth of independence, resilience, collaboration, respect and a love of learning. We will provide an engaging, creative and inspirational curriculum where each child is valued and enabled to achieve and lay strong foundations on which to build their future learning and life skills.
- To provide children with a happy and vibrant foundation which fosters a love of learning.
- To offer a stimulating and inspiring provision where children feel safe and secure enough to take risks within their learning and playing.
- To offer an enriched curriculum providing children with a wide range of new and exciting experiences, both inside and outdoors.
- To encourage children to develop independence and resilience within a secure and nurtured environment.
- To follow the principles of learning without limits where the highest expectations for all the children are held and promoted, providing them with an unlimited opportunity for development.
- To develop the children’s social and emotional wellbeing through our school values based curriculum.
- To embrace the Christian Values, faith and learning within our school.
- To ensure that all children and their families feel safe, valued and respected.
The Foundations of our Early Years Curriculum
We follow the guidelines set out in the ‘Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage’ (Pilot Version September 2018).
The overarching principles are:
- A Unique Child
- Positive Relationships
- Enabling Environments
- Learning and Development
The Characteristics of Effective Learning are:
- Playing and Exploring
- Active Learning
- Creating and thinking critically
The Prime Areas of Learning are:
- Communication and Language
- Physical Development
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
We support children in four Specific Areas, through which the three Prime Areas are strengthened and applied. The Specific Areas are:
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
The teaching of Early Years
Each area of learning and development is implemented through planned, purposeful play and through a mix of adult-led and child-initiated activity. Play is essential for children’s development, building their confidence as they learn to explore, to think about problems and relate to others. Children learn by leading their own play and by taking part in play which is guided by adults. Practitioners will respond to each child’s emerging needs and interests, guiding their development through warm, positive interaction. As the children grow older and move through the Reception year, the balance will shift towards more activities led by adults to help the children prepare for their transition into Year 1.
Dove Class has places for 30 children to attend full-time school and 20 Nursery places where children are welcome to attend full or part-time. The children are supported through the Early Years by an experienced team of practitioners: Mrs Hurren and Mrs Valentine (Teachers), Mrs Legge (Teaching Assistant), Mrs Bullock and Miss George (Nursery Nurses).
There are two classrooms inside for the children to learn and play in and a practical area/kitchen for ‘messy activities’, cooking and snack-times. We also use the School Hall for indoor PE sessions. There is a large outdoor area with a mud kitchen, stage, shelter, a reflective space, reading area, bug hotel, chalk boards, a large sit in sandpit and plenty of space for scooting, cycling, gardening, throwing and catching games. The children in Early Years love investigating and exploring in ‘The Forest School’ in the school grounds and using the school field for a wide variety of activities.