Welcome to our Foundation Stage at Wakefield Methodist (VC) Junior, Infant and Nursery School. We offer flexible and full-time care, including the new 30hr offer and wraparound care (please contact the office for further details).
The Foundation Stage is based on the belief that early years’ provision should offer a sound foundation for future learning. The Foundation Stage places great emphasis on children learning by doing. Young children will be given lots of opportunities to gain first hand experiences through play and active involvement. In our Foundation Stage the children play, make friends, develop and learn. They have great fun, investigating, exploring and creating, in a well-resourced inside and outside environment. They gain independence and confidence and their natural curiosity is encouraged always.
The new Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum (2012) states that:
“Each area of learning and development must be 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.”
The Foundation Stage Team
The curriculum will focus on experimental learning, active involvement and developing each child’s:
- Skills and understanding.
- Personal, social, emotional, physical and intellectual well-being so as to develop the whole child.
- Positive attitudes to learning so that they enjoy it and want to continue.
- Self-esteem and self-confidence to experiment, investigate, learn new things and form new relationships.
- Creative, expressive and observational skills to encourage their development as individuals with different ways of responding to experiences.
- Activities in the outdoors where they have first-hand experience of solving real life problems and learn about conservation and sustainability.
At Wakefield Methodist, children have access to a balanced curriculum that encourages them to learn through play in addition to taking part in adult led activities, supported by experienced Early Years teachers and support staff. Each day, children are exposed to an exciting and varied timetable. All activity that takes place is centred on the children’s interests and adults plan accordingly often working together.
Learning and Development
At Wakefield Methodist we reflect on the different ways that children learn, and then reflect these in our teaching. A child’s individual learning characteristic will determine the way they respond to both the teaching and learning taking place in the environment. Three characteristics of effective teaching and learning identified by the EYFS are:
- playing and exploring - children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’;
- active learning - children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements; and
- creating and thinking critically - children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.
The focus of the CoEL is on how children learn rather than what they learn i.e. process over outcome. Underpinning the CoEL is the understanding that during their earliest years, children form attitudes about learning that will last a lifetime. Children who receive the right sort of support and encouragement during these years will be creative, and adventurous learners throughout their lives.
The Early Years Foundation Stage is separated into three prime areas and four specific areas. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These three areas are the prime areas. Adults must also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied.
Letters and Sounds
In addition to following the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum, we teach phonics through the Letters and Sounds programme. The national expectation is that by the end of Reception, children will know one way of making each of the 44 phonemes (sounds) and will be able to blend and segment words to read and write using these sounds. Children will also learn tricky words up to phase 4.
Links with home and the wider community
We believe that parents and carers are the child’s first and most enduring educators. We try to work with them as partners in their children’s learning. We try to develop a close working relationship between home and school involving parents in their child’s development as much as possible. Some of the ways we encourage this are:
- Ready, stay and play sessions are offered for our children and parents. During these sessions parents will be invited to share their child’s current learning inorder for us to make accurate baseline assessments.
- All children are assigned a key worker.
- Parents and staff have the chance to chat informally at the beginning or end of the school day. Parents are welcome to make appointments at any time if they wish to discuss anything in greater detail or privacy.
- Parents are involved in their child’s learning, planning and assessment. Meetings are held regularly, parents are supported to use our digital learnngbook to make contributions to their child’s learning.
- We involve parents and carers as helpers for regular classroom activities and for special events such as visits to the local area.
- Support and advice is available regularly for all parents
- Parents are always welcome in school.
We use the opportunities offered by the local community in the following ways:
- Exploring the grounds of the school and immediate area, visiting local shops and other attractions;
- Visits from people in the locality who come to talk to the children (police, fire, nurses, parents, etc).
Teachers & Assistants:
Mrs C Waite
Mrs L Simpson
Mrs H. Harris