Children entering St Patrick’s reception class follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (2012) to “…ensure that all children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe. It promotes teaching and learning to ensure children’s ‘school readiness’ and gives children the broad range of knowledge and skills that provide the right foundation for good future progress through school and life.” (P3, EYFS Framework)
Reception class pupils are provided with provision that incorporates the seven areas of learning and development. This includes three prime areas of learning and four specific areas of learning.
The prime areas which provide the foundations for effective learning, are:
Communication and language:
Children are provided with opportunities to experience a rich language environment; supported in the development of their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and given opportunities to speak and listen in a range of situations.
Children are given opportunities to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement. Children will also be provided with activities which develop their understanding of the importance of physical activity, and how to make healthy choices in relation to food.
Personal, social and emotional development
Children are supported with the development of a positive sense of themselves, and others; forming positive relationships and developing respect for others; developing social skills and learning how to manage their feelings; to enable them to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.
The four specific areas are:
Children learn to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. They are provided with a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to develop their interest.
Reading – St Patrick’s children follow the Oxford Reading Tree scheme as a core reading scheme together with a range of reading scheme books. Parents are encouraged to participate in their child’s reading learning journey through home reading practice.
Letters and sounds – Children learn the names and sounds of letters. The emphasis is placed on the phonetic sound each letter makes e.g. “a” as in apple(not apron) “c” as in cat (not cedar). This is important in supporting decoding words and spelling. St Patrick’s uses the “Jolly Phonics” program to provide a fun and active approach to learning letters and sounds for reading and spelling.
Writing – The children practise their fine motor skills through a variety of activities to develop their pencil control. They are encouraged to mark make and attempt their own writing as their skills develop.
Through a variety of practical activities, children are provided with opportunities to develop their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and to describe shapes, spaces, and measures. A range of resources are provided to support children’s mathematical development including natural materials and objects relating to their everyday experiences.
Understanding the world:
Children are supported with making sense of their physical world and their community through activities and opportunities where they explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
Expressive Arts and Design:
Children are encourage and enabled to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.