Early Years Foundation Stage
At Tintagel Primary School we are firm believers that the Foundation Stage is a vital and exciting time for children. It quite literally builds their educational platform giving stability to all learning that follows. During this time, children develop quickly and we want to make sure they have the best start to their school life with us.
The Uniqueness of Every Child
Our staff believe that every child has the potential to be a competent learner who can grow to be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured. We recognise that children develop in individual ways and at varying rates. Children's attitudes and dispositions to learning are influenced by feedback from others so we use praise and encouragement, as well as celebration and rewards, to instil in our children a positive attitude to learning.
We aim to give our children every opportunity to achieve their personal best which means that our planning is adapted to meet the needs of all groups and abilities. We do this by taking account of our children's range of life experiences and the unique world view that they bring to us when they join our school family.
At the Foundation Stage we set realistic and challenging expectations keyed to the needs of our children, so that most achieve the Early Learning Goals by the end of the Foundation Stage. We do this through:
- Planning opportunities that build upon and extend children's knowledge, experience and interests, and develop their self-esteem and confidence;
- Using a wide range of teaching strategies based on children's learning needs;
- Providing a wide range of opportunities to motivate and support children and to help them learn effectively;
- Offering a safe and supportive learning environment in which the contribution of all children is valued;
- Employing resources which reflect diversity and are free from discrimination and stereotyping;
- Planning challenging activities to meet the needs of both boys and girls, of children with special educational needs, of children who are more-able, of children with disabilities, of children from all social and cultural backgrounds, of children from different ethnic groups, and of those from diverse linguistic backgrounds;
- Monitoring children's progress and taking action to provide additional specialist support as necessary - such as referrals to Speech and Language Therapy.
- Working closely with parents, carers and other outside agencies to ensure all children's needs are met so that they are able to access the curriculum and make strong progress.
'Play is the highest form of research.' Albert Einstein
At Tintagel School we strive to create a learning environment that inspires, delights and intrigues, both inside and out. We know that by offering children a wide variety of experiences and opportunities, we could help develop future athletes, artists, authors or astronauts. If children feel confident to challenge themselves, try something new, discover a hidden talent or truly believe in themselves, it could make all the difference to their future. We plan activities and resources based on the children's current interests, developmental needs and areas of learning that need to be taught. When children are excited and completely engrossed in their learning they gain far more from it. We are far more concerned with the learning and processes that have taken place than the end product. We want children to leave us with a variety of skills and abilities to help them develop in a world full of unknowns. For this reason, it is critical that - alongside our parents - we work together to ensure every child's experience in the Early Years Foundation Stage is a preparation for life and not simply preparation for the next stage of education.
We are now at a point where we must educate our children in what no one knew yesterday, and prepare our schools for what no one knows yet.' Margret Mead
'Play is the work of childhood.'
Within the Early Years Foundation Stage we have a slightly different focus compared to the National Curriculum. We have a large focus on the Prime Areas of Learning. These are:
- Communication and Language
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Physical Development
These are the fundamental skills that support any other learning. It is important that children have strong skills in these areas to help support them fully within the Specific Areas of Learning:
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Art and Design
To track the children's development throughout the year and ensure they are making good progress we carry out numerous observations capturing their learning. In order to do this effectively we use an online system called ˜Tapestry'. This is a secure website that allows you to access your own child's journal at home once your account and passwords have been set up. This is a fabulous system as it allows you to see instantly what your child has been learning but also means that you can contribute evidence towards your child's journal at home. This is really important as you are their primary educators and may see developments and milestones we may not have captured yet in class. Furthermore, the children adore sharing their achievement back in the classroom and talking about their learning that you have uploaded. Celebrating these efforts with peers help to build confident, proud learners.
Home-School Partnership Around Every Child
'Children don't need more things. The best toy a child can have is a parent who gets down on the floor and plays with them'.Â Dr Bruce Perry
Alongside Tapestry, as previously mentioned, within Class 1 we work hard to build the link between home and school. We are proud of the open relationships we create with parents as this sharing of knowledge, achievements and next steps really supports the children fully. They are at the centre of everything we do and are our primary focus at Tintagel School. Each term there will be a planned opportunity for parents to to discuss the children's learning with Miss Wheldon and the child themselves. However, in addition we also send home numerous letters, learning materials and invites to performances. Miss Wheldon is always available at the end of the day if you need to catch her briefly for anything or alternatively you can arrange a longer meeting in private with the office. Either Miss Binney or Miss Smith will also be available in the morning to pass on messages needing immediate consideration. Please frequently check your child's book bag for letters, new reading books and resources.
As a school we are here to support you with your child's phonic development. There will be many opportunities for us to share high quality Read, Write, Inc support materials at each stage of your child's development. We do our very best to keep you informed and up to date but if you do feel we could be doing something additional please let us know.
A Wraparound Approach to Nurture
'What a child can do in cooperation today, he can do alone tomorrow'.'Vygotsky
Within Class 1 we have a group of highly experienced and knowledgeable Early Years professionals. We are passionate about what we do and how we do it. We see ourselves as guardians of childhood whilst supporting children to learn, grow and develop. We bring together the experiences of working in a range of different Early Years settings and know how important collaboration is. We are a tight team which had been recognised by external professionals visiting the setting. In addition to our core team we also have Sarah Dingle - our SENDCo - who can support alongside other external professionals such as Speech and Language teams, if your child should require some additional support.
We will work closely with your child to help them achieve some amazing things. Although, it is a lovely moment for us when we can step back and watch them do something completely independently. Within Class 1, we foster such independence as this independent application of a new skill demonstrates strong learning has taken place.
We are sure you will quickly get to know our dedicated and welcoming team.