At Boughton Leigh Infant School our aim is provide children with the key skills which equips them to succeed in their life beyond our school. This journey begins in our Early Years Foundation Stage provision where we inspire children with a rich and meaningful start to their education. We create a learning environment which supports, enhances and invites a child’s curiosity, which alongside positive relationships allows individuals to flourish. We work collaboratively with parents and carers to encourage independent and enthusiastic learners who thrive and reach their full potential in our setting, at home and in their wider community. It is our intent that those children who start their lifelong learning journey with us develop both physically, verbally, cognitively and emotionally whilst also embedding a positive attitude towards learning and school. We take into consideration the starting points and needs of our pupils as they begin their learning journey. Every child has access to our bespoke curriculum which we feel meets the needs of all our children and continues to offer high quality, engaging learning experiences. Following this curriculum allows us to plan and provide opportunities throughout our EYFS to support learning and development and achieve their next steps. All children will receive the teaching and learning of early reading from Nursery following the Read Write Inc program which is embedded in all areas of our school. Elements of the Maths Mastery program which is also well established within our school is taught from Nursery.
Our bespoke curriculum at Boughton Leigh Infant school is delivered throughout our whole school from Nursery through to Year 2. Within the Early Years Foundation Stage the curriculum is planned, delivered and defined by the new Early Years Foundation Stage framework which came into effect from September 2021, within this framework it states ‘children develop quickly in the early years and a child’s experiences between birth and age five have a major impact on their future life chances. A secure, safe and happy childhood is important in its own right. Good parenting and high-quality early learning together provide the foundation children need to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up,’ (DfE, 2021). The statutory EYFS framework and the non-statutory Development Matters form the basis of our curriculum. Our curriculum provides a play-based and experiential learning environment, combined with focussed teaching and basic skills to ensure children make progress before moving onto Reception and Year 1 respectively. In line with the rest of the school, we deliver our curriculum through half termly themes, this allows us to build on children’s knowledge and interests, to broaden their knowledge and enhance their imagination.
Children benefit from meaningful learning across the curriculum and our staff plan resourcefully for these opportunities. Children in both Nursery and Reception are provided with valuable play based learning opportunities which can be accessed in both our indoor and outdoor provisions. Rich first hand experiences allows children opportunity for communication, sustained shared thinking and physical challenge to build on their existing skills and take into account the Characteristics of Effective Learning. Our curriculum promotes and supports the children’s emotional security and development of their character, enabling children to take risks in a safe and secure environment. Supporting children to be active and to develop physically including giving clear messages to children as to why it is important to eat, drink and exercise as well as be kind to others.
At Boughton Leigh Infant School, we use Read, Write, Inc. by Ruth Miskin (RWI) to teach early reading and writing. Our reading journey begins in our Nursery by sharing lots of stories, songs and nursery rhymes with our children. We read and repeat these over and over again and add actions so that children can confidently join in and learn them. Once the children are ready we introduce our children to the ‘picture cards’ and concentrate on lots of ‘Fred Talk’ (orally blending). When ready, we then teach them the Set 1 sounds which then continues into Reception where they learn to blend sounds together to read and segment to spell.
We adopt the Maths Mastery program of teaching. Skills are developed cumulatively from Reception onwards, with some elements of the program being introduced in Nursery to our youngest children, so that pupils can become increasingly fluent in making connections, thinking mathematically and communicating effectively. Maths Meetings are a vital part of our maths teaching and are used to consolidate key learning. Each Maths Meeting is taught daily and lasts between 5 and 15 minutes. Each year group in school from Nursery to Year 2 participate in Maths Meetings. Maths Meetings within our youngest learners allows them to consolidate counting, numbers, days of the week and months of the year. This is done through songs and rhymes which the children are fully engaged in and enjoy.
At Boughton Leigh Infant School our curriculum is carefully planned to ensure that children’s learning is centred around age appropriate knowledge and skills. Our children will grow to be confident, competent lifelong learning and good citizens. The children at Boughton Leigh Infant School experience a smooth transition between Nursery, Reception and beyond. Effective communication and collaboration ensure that children leave the EYFS with a solid foundation of learning of which to build upon.
We use Learning Journeys across the EYFS, supplemented with Writing and Maths books in Reception which evidence to the children and their families the successes of the children throughout their time in Early Years.
Assessment starts with careful observations which are then used to inform planning. Learning and teaching is effective when children feel a sense of belonging, curiosity and competence. As a team we then carry out regular internal moderation sessions and ensure that staff attend external meetings and training to ensure that we feel confident with our judgements. By monitoring assessment procedures regularly, we can effectively demonstrate what learning is taking place and how each child is progressing in all seven areas of the EYFS curriculum.
Progress towards the Early Learning Goals is closely tracked through conversations with the children and the observations made whilst children are working both independently and with an adult. The impact of the EYFS curriculum is reflected in having happy, confident children transition into Year 1.