At William Reynolds Primary School and Nursery, we adhere to the four overarching principles that shape our practice within Early Years settings. These are central to us creating a Foundation Stage that starts with the child, supports, and develops the role of parents who we build good relationships with, offers a high-quality environment, and provides pupils with exciting contexts for their learning. We believe all children including SEND and PPG should have the same opportunities, encouraging them to be curious, to play and explore, actively engage in their learning, and develop skills of creativity and critical thinking. Our aim is for the majority of children to gain or exceed the Early Learning Goals but for all children to make good progress and reach their full potential.
Our four overarching principles – from the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage- are:
- Every pupil is a unique child, who is consistently learning and can be resilient, capable, confident, and self-assured.
- Pupils learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
- Pupils learn and develop well in enabling environments with teaching and support from adults, who respond to their individual interests and needs and help them to build their learning over time. Pupils benefit from a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and/or carers.
- Pupils develop and learn at different rates so the curriculum offered caters for each child’s individual needs.
The core of our EYFS curriculum is the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage, which is supported by Read, Write, Inc, Early Years Foundation Stage Profile (2021), Development Matters, Birth to 5 Matters and the Seven Features of Effective Practice.
Nursery and Reception follow one year cycle curriculum maps linked to the rest of the school. They outline the seven key areas which ensures that adequate amount of time and coverage is allocated to each key area through well planned themes. So, all children learn more and know more.
Our curriculum maps are carefully planned to have breadth and depth and introduce quality core concepts, bodies of knowledge and key concepts which will be built on in Year 1. The ambitious curriculum is a carefully devised sequential offer to ensure the children become fluent in essential foundational knowledge necessary for reading, writing and mathematics. Vocabulary is taught through teacher directed and teacher led learning which the children use in their child-led play. This enables our pupils to know more and remember more ready for future learning. End points are identified across all seven areas of learning in the EYFS progression document.
We cover the seven areas of learning to ensure that pupils experience a curriculum that is broad and ambitious that develops their vocabulary and prepares them for their next stage of learning. We have heavily invested in books (stories and non-fiction) for Understanding the World which we reread as this deepens familiarity with a story and greater emotional engagement, so children know and remember key concepts which follow through school. Children will learn about the lives of those whose experiences and perspectives differ from their own. Daily reading will ensure children develop a love of reading.
Our pedagogical approach to learning begins with Medium Term Planning which supports teachers to plan a board, balanced and sequenced series of lessons documented on the progression grids. The curriculum enables pupils to build on previous learning and have opportunities to master new concepts whilst providing the flexibility for children to follow their own interests and ideas. Systematic well planned lessons are taught through teacher directed and teacher led which leads into play-based learning where children can access a language rich environment through all 7 areas of learning independently inside and outside.