At Forest our Early Years team is made up of the Early Years Leader (Senior Leader), Reception Class Teacher and a Learning Support Assistant.
We are very lucky in the EYFS to have a fantastic learning environment made up of two inter-joining classrooms, a large outdoor area and a work area. This enables our team to provide a stimulating and exciting learning environment, which is adapted and changed regularly to meet the needs and interests of our pupils and to promote the unique child.
We follow the Development Matters 2012 framework to support our EYFS curriculum. Development Matters is made up of 7 areas of learning, 3 prime and 4 specific:
Prime: Communication and Language; Personal, Social and emotional development & Physical Development.
Specific: Literacy; Maths; Understanding the World & Expressive Arts and Design
Underpinning all the areas of learning are the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’. This refers to how, in the EYFS, children learn best when they are ‘Playing and Learning’, ‘Active Learning’ and ‘Thinking Critically’.
Our curriculum is child-centered and follows the interests and fascinations of the children in the current cohort. It has been designed to provide children with the skills, knowledge and understanding that they will need to prepare them for their future education. We believe the role of the adult is crucial in the Early Years, at Forest the adults follow the cycle of 'observation, assessment and plan'.
During a child’s Reception year the Class Teacher and LSA will regularly meet with parents/carers to provide feedback about how their child is progressing and how they can support at home. We use the app 'Evidence for Learning' to record children’s learning and assess where they are working developmentally. At the end of the year parents/carers will receive a printed copy of their child's Learning Journey to keep.
We believe it is important to give children as many first hand experiences as possible. In Reception, children enjoy a range of activities including educational visits including, the post office, airport, pumpkin farm, town library and the beach. Reception class also enjoy learning outside the classroom and on Friday take part in ‘Forest Fridays’. We have a fantastic nature area, which has recently been redeveloped and we use it to teach our EYFS children all about the environment and the world around them.