Statement of Intent-Foundation Stage
The Early Years are vital for a child’s social, emotional, physical and academic development. The Foundation Stage creates the essential building blocks for future learning. At Herne CE Infant and Nursery school, we have an ethos where children flourish in a safe, nurturing, creative and inspiring environment. Our child centred approach offers children opportunities to explore and learn with the support and guidance of experienced Early Years practitioners. We embed the Characteristics of Effective Learning in daily routines and promote many skills through both teacher led and child initiated sessions. We challenge our children with problem solving activities, encourage risk taking and perseverance, and support them with negotiating their ideas with others. Life skills develop through a wide range of creative, topic led activities. We promote imagination, independence and wellbeing in all of our children across all areas of the curriculum.
All the children have settled into school life incredibly well! Our first topic was “I am Me. We are Herne”, which allowed us to get to know each other, find out about our families and talk about what makes us all special and all unique.
Some of our new learning stars include:
- Finding out our new classroom names. We are now the Doormice, Squirrels and Hedgehogs!
- Remembering where to put our name cards, water bottles, book bags and coats
- How to wash our hands and manage our own hygiene
- Becoming more independent
- How to listen carefully to help us to learn
- Exploring areas of the wider school such as the library, hall, music room, ICT suite, the HIVE and the wildlife area
- Learning the names of our new friends and adults
- Creating lots of lovely art and crafts to decorate our classrooms with
- Playing lots of small group games, joining in with teacher time activities and learning through play during COOL Time (Continuing Our Own Learning time)
- Singing songs and learning special prayers
- Bringing home our first reading books
- Eating lunch in our classrooms!
Our exciting topics this term have been ‘The Wonderful World of Julia Donaldson’ and ‘It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas’.
Some of our highlights are:
- Listening to and joining in with many stories that have repeated patterns
- Learning many letters and sounds as part of our Phonic learning, which was cross curricular and multi-sensory
- Exploring numbers to ten, comparing place value and the skills of addition and subtraction
- Making many Wintery themed arts and crafts to turn our classrooms into a Winter Wonderland!
- Holding onto the magic by being in the Nativity Play, which was filmed for parents to watch at home.
- Joining in with some Writedance sessions that help us with our Herne Handwriting Patterns
- Exploring our gross motor skills in the hall by moving our bodies and enhancing our balancing skills in many ways.
- Visiting areas around the school such as the HIVE and Wildlife Area as part of our Teacher time
- Finding out about our COOL Time Characteristic Characters whilst we learn through play.
We had one day together then we went into Lockdown!
The teachers created Remote Learning activities and filmed many videos to help teach the children who were at home, whilst teaching the children of Key Workers within school. Our topics were ‘Walking in a Winter Wonderland’ and ‘Around the World with Paddington Bear’
Some of the activities included:
- Practising our rolling, throwing and catching skills.
- Learning more letters, sounds and digraphs
- Looking at Tricky Words
- Exploring flat and solid shapes, coins to the value of 5p and number bonds to five.
- Having a go at writing cursive letters and our names in a cursive joined up script.
- Joining in with a weekly class story time via Zoom between home and school.
There were three weeks of Remote Learning/Key Worker class bubbles, then we all came back together in our class families! It was so wonderful seeing all our friends and grown-ups!
This term our topics were ‘Once Upon a Time’ and ‘Springing into Easter’.
We enjoyed activities such as:
- Learning how traditional stories start and how they end.
- Looking at focus stories ‘The Three Little Pigs’ and ‘The Ugly Duckling’, and taking part in a wide range of cross curricular learning opportunities.
- Learning letters, sounds, digraphs, trigraphs and tricky words as part of our differentiated Phonic sessions
- Testing our bravery skills with the large apparatus during our Hall times, by travelling, climbing and balancing using increasing coordination.
- Delving more into 2D and 3D shapes and number bonds to ten.
- Playing circle games and social skill activities to help us build our friendships following Lockdown.
- Having a go at writing more cursive letters and refining our cursive name writing skills.
- Attempting to write words using our segmenting and blending skills.
- Creating arts and crafts for our environment.
- Learning about why Christians celebrate Easter by making paper palm leaves., eating hot cross buns, making Easter Gardens, going on egg hunts, taking part in an Easter walk around the school and making Easter bonnets.
Our main topic has been ‘Down at the Bottom of our Garden’, and we spent four weeks exploring Minibeasts and two weeks of Plants. We had a special book week in-between, exploring the picture book ‘Journey’
Some of our highlights include:
- Exploring the stories by Eric Carle, including The Very Busy Spider, The Bad Tempered Ladybird and The Very Hungry Caterpillar
- Learning these stories off by heart by using pictures clues, story maps and using objects from story sacks.
- Recapping all cursive letter formations
- Writing class stories, lists and labels
- Recapping all letter names, sounds, digraphs and trigraphs
- Exploring sharing and doubling
- Counting, ordering and writing numbers to 20
- Welcoming our class caterpillars and watching them grow
- Taking part in the school’s dance festival, performing it to our year group and judges, and filming it for our families at home
- Planting seeds and watching them grow
- Drawing still life pictures of our growing plants as well as many other arts and crafts
- Learning how plants grow and what they need
- Celebrating Herne Book Day and dressing up as book characters
Our themes for our final term have been ‘Super Superheroes’, ‘Emergency! 999!’ and ‘The Olympics’.
We are ending our year together with a ‘Through the Looking Glass’ reflection, thinking back to our wonderful time together and all the things we have done and learnt.
Some of our Highlights include:
Releasing our class pet caterpillars who transformed into beautiful butterflies. We all felt a little sad!
Having a visit from a real life superhero called ‘’Super-Super Girl’, who told us about her powers
Imagining ourselves as a superhero, writing about our own powers and making costumes using our measuring skills
Finding out facts from non-fiction books about real life superheroes such as doctors, vets, firefighter and the police.
Receiving a visit from a real veterinary nurse, looking at her special equipment and seeing photos of all the different rooms in a vet surgery
Having two police officer tell us about their special jobs and going inside their police van, looking and the tools and equipment
Exploring repeating patterns in a wide range of ways such as movement, sound and appearance
Joining in with space, shape and measure activities such as capacity and measuring heights and length
Taking part in a whole school Circus Day, learning new skills to help our coordination, balance and fine motor skills
Learning about the Olympics and history associated with it. We made arts and crafts, and took part in a range of activities
Joining in with a whole school Olympic theme, where we had an Olympic themed sports day. This included an opening ceremony for our country teams, playing skill based games in our teams competing against each other, taking part in track events and finishing with a closing ceremony
Writing about ourselves and what things we have enjoyed in Year R
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