An Introduction to Early Years
When children start school they enter the final year of the Early Years Foundation Stage, which is the statutory framework for children from birth to five years. This means that children have a smooth transition on their learning journey from home, nursery or pre-school into their first year at school.
At school they continue to learn through play, with a balance of activities freely chosen by the child and focussed learning opportunities led by an adult. A carefully planned transition programme is in place to enable children to settle into school quickly and easily.
Children each belong to one of three classes which is led by their class teacher and support staff. Children from all all classes are able to interact with each other and access different areas of learning (both indoors and outdoors) during their self-directed play. This helps build children’s confidence and independence.
The Learning Journey Continues into Year One
When the school year starts in September many Year One children have only just had their fifth birthday so it is important that the transition from Early Years to Year One allows them the opportunity to continue learning through first-hand experiences.
Year One continues to provide many of the opportunities that children will already have experienced in Early Years, including opportunities for role-play and exploring and investigating the school grounds. Maths, phonics and reading activities continue daily developing key skills which are then applied through other areas of the curriculum.
The wider curriculum is taught together through topic work building cross-curricular links and opportunities for children to practise and apply key skills. The new National Curriculum is used to support Year One planning and include a wide range of opportunities to develop the children’s independent learning.
Alongside on-going assessments the National Phonics Test is taken by Year One children during the summer term.
Children’s Final Year in Year 2
The Year Two curriculum provides an exciting final year at infant school preparing children for junior school. Children continue to develop as independent learners and work towards developing lively, enquiring minds. As part of engaging topic work children go on exciting school trips and learning is applied in a variety of real-life contexts helping to deepen their understanding of the world around them.
During the summer term many opportunities to visit our junior site are built into the curriculum supporting children with a smooth transition into junior school. The final term ends with children participating in a grand Sports Day held at the Aldershot Sports Stadium and a special Leavers’ Assembly performed to families and guests of the school.
At the end of Y2 children are assessed against end of key stage expectations and results in reading, writing and maths are published nationally.
Visitors are invited into school throughout the school year and regular off-site visits include Bockett’s Farm (EY), Intech, Hillier Gardens (Y1), Windsor Castle and Marwell Zoo (Y2).
Parents who read with their child at home give them a gift they will take through life with them.
The Oxford Reading Tree scheme is the key scheme used in the teaching of reading throughout the school, this is supplemented by other phonically based schemes to give children breadth to their reading experience. We use the "Letter and Sounds" programme throughout the school as a framework to teaching phonics.
Every Child a Reader
We know how crucial it is for every child to become a successful reader. We are very lucky to have a Reading Recovery teacher at our Infant site. The Reading Recovery programme is aimed at struggling readers in Year One, to become confident, independent readers through a one-to-one daily reading and writing programme with a specially trained teacher.
In addition to this, we have Better Reading Partners at both, the Infant and Junior sites. Our trained staff work one-to-one, 3 times a week, with children working below average in reading.
Both programmes have seen outstanding results, particularly when supported by parents listening to their children read daily at home.
If you would like to know any more about our curriculum please contact the Head of School, Mrs Natasha Brock, through the school office.