When your child starts with us in Caterpillars, they will be coming into what is called The Early Years Foundation Stage (Birth to Five). We provide a broad, balanced, developmentally appropriate and flexible curriculum that caters for the wide range of needs of the children with whom we work.
The Three prime areas of learning and development are:
• COMMUNICATION and LANGUAGE involves giving children opportunities to experience a language rich environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
• PHYSICAL involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their coordination, control, and movement. Children must be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
• PERSONAL, SOCIAL & EMOTIONAL involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own ability.
The Four Specific areas of learning are:
• LITERACY development involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest
• MATHEMATICS involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems and to describe shapes, spaces and measures.
• EXPRESSIVE ARTS and DESIGN involves enabling children 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 technology.
• UNDERSTANDING of the WORLD involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
The children access the curriculum through practical experiences and structured play activities in both the indoor and outdoor environment. We also like to arrange visitors to come in and see us such as policemen, firemen, a veterinary nurse etc.
Your child’s Learning Journey & sharing this with you!
Every child that enters Caterpillars (Nursery) will have their own Learning Journey. This is where we will keep examples of their work and observations recorded by staff members on their achievements. Staff take the time to work with and observe the children in order to recognise where we can support them next. This profile is a way of recording their development and learning during their time in Nursery. We encourage parents to contribute to this by writing down anything your child does at home or bringing in photos or drawings they have done at home, and sharing their great achievements! We are always open to parent queries and want to support you with your child’s development and recognise that you know them best.
We update these at the end of each big term, and then share them with you at home giving you the opportunity to look through them together and give feedback to us.
Principles of Learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage Play!
Children learn best by playing and exploring. This is fundamental to learning for all children in the Early Years Foundation Stage. We carefully plan activities to ensure children learn the most from them, but have maximum amount of enjoyment too. We plan our learning through the interests of the children. We also feature learning around cultural and calendar events and special events from home.
We aim to ensure all children are not only developing their confidence as learners but also to have a go and take risks as learners. We wish to instil into our children open inquiring minds, high self-esteem, great confidence and most importantly- to be happy learners. We often look for “Characteristics of Effective Learning” where children demonstrate their engagement, involvement and thinking too. These too lay great foundations towards school readiness.
Positive Behaviours for Learning & Rewards
We want children to have a positive attitude to coming to Caterpillars and being with other children. We recognise it is hard to be so young and be in such a social environment at times- especially when it comes to expectations such as sharing! Our job is to support children in this experience, offering them guidance and modelling positive behaviour. We aim is to share and feedback to parents. We also have the expectation that we will work together in supporting children to have a positive experience here in the Nursery. We reward children’s behaviours in many different ways such as using our behaviour chart, certificates, stickers, assemblies and other systems that children find exciting!