Is your child joining us in Nursery or Reception?
On these pages you will find lots of useful information to help you and your child get prepared.
The Early Years Foundation Stage
At Heathland School, we believe that every child deserves an excellent early education and every parent should feel confident that their child is offered the best. Our Early Years setting is an exciting place where children are nurtured, learning is fun and achievement is celebrated. The Nursery and Reception settings have engaging continuous provision activities which challenge and ignite children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning.
Here at Heathland School, we are focused on young children’s learning and development and meeting their individual needs, whilst providing a happy and healthy learning environment. The comfort and care that our professional staff provide children in our Early Years setting is crucial in making them feeling safe and secure in order for them to explore the world around them. We encourage children to be independent and allow them to feel confident in making their own choices and selecting their own resources to further their learning. Our learning time includes child-initiated and adult-led activities that are planned around our curriculum as well as children’s interests and needs which enables them to develop new skills and gain first-hand experiences.
The Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is taught through a balance of adult-led and child-initiated activities. We have a holistic and cross-curricular approach which means that the children get to develop skills in all areas of the curriculum. The 7 areas of learning and development which shape activities and experiences for children in EYFS are described as follows:
Prime areas: Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development.
Specific areas: Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design.
A usual day in our setting consists of whole class topic, phonics and maths carpet sessions, as well as one-to-one or group focus learning with an adult, and most importantly lot of opportunities of child-initiated learning through play throughout the day. In addition, each day in our bright and colourful Early Years classrooms offers children a chance to enjoy music from around the world, learn new dances, paint and explore with colours, let their imagination fly in the wonderful role play areas and of course develop a love for reading by listening to stories every day.
Assessments in Early Years are based on what our practitioners observe and what they know about the children through observations, daily interactions as well as co-playing. The Early Years Foundation Stage Profile is a summary of each child’s attainment at the end of the Reception year based on what children have demonstrated they know, understand and can do in all Prime Areas of learning, Literacy and Maths against the ‘Early Learning Goals’.
We like to work closely with parents and carers to ensure that together we can give every child the foundation they need to succeed in and outside of school. We feel it is very important for parents and Early Years staff to have a strong and respectful partnership. At the beginning of the year we welcome parents and children into our classrooms for ‘Stay and Play’ sessions in order for them to get to know their teacher and class. Our Curriculum meeting informs parents of key information, life in Early Years and ways of supporting children at home. We are delighted to have parents accompany us on school trips as well as reading stories at the end of the school day. In addition, we encourage parents to send us learning or photos from home which children can share with their class, and this also contribute to their Learning Journey.
At Heathland School, we believe that every child is unique and special. It is our positive relationships with our children that allows them to try new things, ‘have a go’ and be the best that they can be. The Early Years is a very important stage as it prepares children for future learning and successes and it is here at our school that we believe children have the freedom to expand their knowledge and development.