In the Early Years we do not view ‘teaching’ as separate from play or infer teaching to mean one fixed view of how things should be done.
‘Teaching should not be taken to imply a ‘top down’ or formal way of working. It is a broad term which covers the many different ways in which adults help young children learn. It includes their interactions with children during planned and child-initiated play and activities: communicating and modelling language, showing, explaining, demonstrating, exploring ideas, encouraging, questioning, recalling, providing a narrative for what they are doing, facilitating and setting challenges. It takes account of the equipment they provide and the attention to the physical environment as well as the structure and routines of the day that establish expectations. Integral to teaching is how practitioners assess what children know, understand and can do as well as take account of their interests and dispositions to learning (characteristics of effective learning), and use this information to plan children’s next steps in learning and monitor their progress.’
Our overarching aim for the EYFS is to ensure children leave our early years provision as confident, independent learners with the skills needed to excel throughout their school career and beyond. All planning follows children’s interests, schemas and needs that arise. Adult quality interaction and continuous analysis ensures gaps in knowledge and understanding are built upon effectively.
“Play is the highest form of research” Albert Einstein.
The curriculum within the Early Years is carefully planned to ensure there are plenty of opportunities for the children to talk, gain experiences and develop and share their own knowledge of knowledge and strategies; this is embedded through the Characteristic’s of Effective Learning.
Playing and exploring – investigate, experience and have a go.
Active learning - persistence, concentration and recognise achievements.
Creating and thinking critically - develop ideas, make links and develop strategies.
Through this approach we ensure the provision is set up to enable a purposeful learning environment that challenges and inspires independent learning. Staff continually audit the provision to ensure all areas are used effectively by all children. We have combined research and proven practice methods alongside Early Excellence audits to shape and develop the provision. Research included but not exclusive to Alistair Bryce-Clegg, Anna Ephgrave, Greg Bottrell, Elizabeth Jarman, The OFSTED Inspection Handbook, TES articles.
We have developed our planning and split this into sections; long term, medium term and short term planning. All planning is skills focused not activity led to enable the learning to be purposeful to the children.
Each term we have a focused novel study. When choosing the novel for each term, we use the children’s interests, focus skills and differentiation to identify the best novel to meet these needs. This ensures high levels of engagement, high-quality teaching and high-quality learning.
For teaching Early reading, we use Read Write Inc Phonics. This means that they learn how to decode by reading the sounds in words and how those sounds can be written down. This is essential for reading, but it also helps children learn to spell well. We teach the children simple ways of remembering these sounds and letters using the rhymes. The children then learn to blend the sounds in the words to read the words accurately. All children will read once a week with an adult focusing on word reading and applying phonics. Through continuous assessment children who are identifies as having gaps in their learning access daily, 1:1 reading with and adult. The adults support misconceptions and gaps in on phonological awareness to ensure all children are confident and fluent readers.
Reading for pleasure
We have a strong ethos around the importance of reading; including reading for pleasure. As well as taking home a decodable reading book, the children choose their own story book from the library to share at home each week. All children have shared read time with the teacher once a week focusing on comprehension and enjoyment of reading.
“Parents play a crucial role in supporting their children’s learning, and levels of parental engagement are consistently associated with better academic outcomes.” – EEF December 2018
We pride ourselves on strong parental links using the parent-teacher partnerships three C’s.
Frequent, two-way communication focusing on the holistic child. Parents have access to Class Dojo, Tapestry, Arbour and are welcomed when speaking to the teacher and sharing information regarding their child.
Creating routines and providing consistence opportunities to enhance learning in school and at home.
A collaborative, cooperative partnership involves planning and problem-solving to develop specific, positive strategies to help children achieve to their highest potential.
Tapestry learning journals are used to foster the three C’s. In school, it is used to capture learning and ensure the children know the importance of their own learning. The children take pride in their learning and want to share this with their parents. Parents can reciprocate by sharing learning, experiences and celebrations at home. The children are proud of their achievements and strive to achieve both at home and in school.
Parents are invited to attend meetings and workshops to support their child’s learning at home.
Parent involvement includes but not exclusive to: