What happens in Nursery and Reception
The Nursery and Reception classrooms are set up so that children can choose where they want to play and they access the resources independently. There are different areas of the classroom which have specific intended learning experiences. These are called Continuous Provision areas such as reading, maths, writing/ mark making, role play, sand, water, playdoh, small world and creative.
This encourages independence and allows children to approach challenges at their own level. Resources for independent play are carefully planned so that there is appropriate challenge at all levels.
The children in Nursery and Reception follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Development Matters curriculum. We aim for a seamless transition from Nursery to Reception and the same areas of learning are taught. Nursery and Reception children share the outdoor learning and play area and also eat their lunch together.
Seven Areas of Learning
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development: a continuous process with a lot of nurturing, discussion and modelling talk and behaviour. The focus is on relationships and being confident, responsible and independent.
- Communication and Language: the focus is on speaking, listening and understanding. Children will be actively taught speaking and listening skills through guided talk and news discussions.
- Physical Development: includes fine and gross motor skills both indoors and outdoors. Nursery children will have hall time for dance activities and Reception children will have hall time for gym, dance and games. Cutting, playdoh, small construction, bikes and the climbing frame are all activities which develop motor skills. Children will also learn about health and self care.
- Literacy: includes Reading and Writing. In Nursery the focus for Reading is rhythm and rhyme, enjoyment of stories and noticing print in the environment. In Reception, children will be involved with specific Guided Reading teaching as soon as they are ready. Daily Phonics teaching underpins reading in both Nursery and Reception. Writing begins as mark making in Nursery on a small or large scale with a variety of tools and resources and this is continued in Reception alongside Guided Writing teaching.
- Maths: the emphasis in both Nursery and Reception is on practical activities, counting and problem solving within the children’s own contexts and interests
- Understanding the World: children will be encouraged to investigate, explore and talk about what they find out in their own environments, within their family life and school visits. This also includes technology such as using cameras, microphones, CD players, programmable toys, ipads and laptops.
- Expressive Arts and Design: This includes music, art, dance, design, construction and role play.
Parents and Carers are regularly invited to a variety of activities and workshops in the classroom alongside their children and are encouraged to support home learning through activities such as Play Club phonics bags.
The outdoor learning area is set up to ensure that children have learning experiences on a larger scale. For example mark making might be twirling large ribbons, chalking on the floor, painting with brushes and rollers. Outdoor learning also supports different learning styles. Our Mud Kitchen has a surprisingly calming effect on children and is a contented hive of harmonious and cooperative activity. We have recently developed an outdoor maths area which is set up with continuous provision but can also be used for planned maths activities. We operate a free flow system to enable the children to make the most of outdoor learning.