Our setting has designed a curriculum around that meets the standards of the new EYFS 2021, providing a range of play experiences which support children in becoming strong, confident individuals with a passion to learn.
In addition, the revised EYFS demands that the characteristics of effective learning are recognised and promoted. This means that we look for, and support children in developing such characteristics as persistence, problem-solving, confidence, and motivation.
Letters and Sounds
We recognise the importance of a language rich environment, developing of good sound communication and language skills in young children.
Consequently, we follow the Letters and Sounds programme on a daily basis. This is a National Primary Strategy designed to support communication and language development, which is intended to prepare children for their eventual introduction to more structured literacy in reception year of primary school.
The 7 aspects within Phase 1 allow us to tailor activities to meet the needs of all ages and abilities, promoting good listening and sound awareness skills with more direct phonics, such as recognising the initial (first) sounds of words.
At Orleton, Letter and Sounds activities are fun, whole-group experiences, with the older children modelling good sharing, listening and turn-taking to their younger friends.
Tapestry is an innovative software, it is a method of producing learning journals about the children we work with. These develop into comprehensive records of children’s learning, both adult and child-initiated.
A child’s Key Person uses the system to make observations quickly when a significant learning moment occurs, using a tablet to record and link the development to development matters. These may be planned adult-led or child-led, and may focus on just one child, or a group of children.
A particular strength of the system is the facility which allows us to notify parents/carers of a new observation (securely) as soon as it occurs, including photographs. This means that the child’s family is involved in every little step they take. It also allows parents/carers to share anything about their child’s development which can also be included in the learning journal.
Periodically, parents will receive a review of the child’s progress, and opportunity to discuss this with their child’s Key Person.
The staff team provide our rising fives (school leavers) with focus sessions. The aim is promoting good listening and sound awareness skills with more direct phonics, such as recognising the initial (first) sounds of words through brief and fun activities, and working on basic numeracy skills. These sessions have become very popular, and we feel that this additional focus on these vital areas of learning means that all children move on to Reception Class with a solid grounding in age-appropriate phonics and numeracy.
Two Year Old’s Curriculum
Alongside the daily curriculum for all children, we have a two year old curriculum that gives more of a focus on their needs. We recognise that at this age and stage children’s brains are rapidly developing, therefore daily time is made within the routine, where the children are split into groups, and the two year old’s have time with a staff member to develop key skills such as independence or language, ensuring their individual needs are met.