“Play is the soil from which a child grows” ~ Vince Gowmon
We provide a safe, positive and enabling environment, where children are guided and supported by adults that they trust, allowing them to feel confident to explore the world around them, extend their interests and discover their passions.
We have one Nursery class one Reception class. These classes work together to provide a solid foundation on which our children can continue their learning journey.
The Characteristics of the Foundation Stage Curriculum
- Communication and Language
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Physical Development.
These are areas that children develop quickly in response to relationships and experience. They run through and support children’s learning in all other areas.
4 Specific areas:
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
These are areas that include developing specific skills and knowledge.
Both the Prime and Specific areas will be taught through:
- Playing and exploring
- Active learning
- Creating and thinking critically
The importance of play
Well-planned play, both indoors and outdoors, is an important way in which young children learn with enjoyment and challenge. In playing, they behave in different ways; sometimes their play will be boisterous, sometimes they will describe and discuss what they are doing, sometimes they will be quiet and reflective as they play. Through play, in a secure environment with effective adult support, children can:
- Explore, develop and represent learning experiences that help them make sense of the world
- Practise and build up ideas, concepts and skills
- Learn how to control impulses and understand the need for rules
- Be alone, be alongside others or cooperate as they talk or rehearse their feelings
- Take risks and make mistakes
- Think creatively and imaginatively
- Communicate with others as they investigate or solve problems
- Express fears or relive anxious experiences in controlled and safe situations.
Literacy in the early years includes talking about books, print in the environment, early mark making and writing, as well as sharing books and reading. Below are some useful links to help you support your child with developing early literacy skills.
Developing Language for EYFS
How to help your child develop their phonics skills and letter recognition
How to help your child develop their reading skills
How to help your child develop their writing skills
Maths is an important part of learning for all children in the early years and receiving a good grounding in maths is an essential life skill.
As well as numeracy, it helps skills such as problem solving, understanding and using shapes and measure and developing spatial awareness. It helps children to recognise, create and describe patterns, which is essential for early problem solving skills.
Introducing maths to children from an early age helps to develop their understanding of all elements of problem solving and reasoning in a broad range of contexts. Click on the video below for fun ideas for helping your child with maths in a real life context.
Speech and Language Therapy Service
At Harrington Hill we recognise that listening and talking are the key foundation skills for later literacy and academic achievement. We work closely with the Speech and Language Therapy Service, whose highly trained speech and language therapists come into school each week to deliver a bespoke early years package to our children in Reception.
Launchpad for Language is a fun-filled language enrichment programme for all children in Reception. It works with children, staff and parents to support every child to reach their communication potential with a particular emphasis on those with greater language needs.
Look out for invitations, letters and activities that will share with you things that we are doing at school!
English as an Additional Language
We are proud to welcome families from a wealth of different cultures and backgrounds and we greatly value the rich diversity of our school community. We have pupils from all around the world and over 20 languages spoken. As such, support for EAL (English as an Additional Language) is a big part of our school. We recognise that a child’s home language is integral to a child’s cultural and individual identity, and should be encouraged to be used and developed at home. Here are some top tips for supporting children with EAL at home:
- Speak to your child in the language you feel most confident in.
- Read together every day.
- Play games that involve speaking and listening (e.g. ‘Simon says…’).
Helping your child at home
Showing an interest in what your child does at school helps them to make good progress, e.g. when your child brings home paintings and other work, please show your pleasure at what your child has done. It may not always look very special to you, but it means a lot to your child. The first five years are very important years in a child’s life. During these years, children learn faster than at almost any other time.
Here are some ways in which you can help your child:-
- By talking to them, listening to them and answering their questions.
- By showing an interest in all they do and always encouraging them.
- By giving them plenty of interesting things to do, like cooking, playing with water, cutting out and looking at books.
- By finding time to play with them, telling and reading them stories and letting them help you.
- By taking them on trips and outings and talking about what you see.
If you have any worries or concerns about your child, please in the first instance speak to your child’s class teacher. If necessary, appointments can be made to see the Phase Leader for the EYFS.