Queenswell Infant and Nursery School
The Early Years Foundation Stage
The Foundation Stage covers children’s education and development from birth to 5 years. This includes the Nursery, which we call Foundation 1 (F1), and the Reception year, which we call Foundation 2 (F2).
The Foundation Stage curriculum is made up of 7 areas of learning and development. These are:
We plan a range of learning experiences to help children develop in all of these areas of learning. We encourage and promote opportunities to allow children to express the characteristics of effective learning in their play.
Characteristics of Effective Learning
The statutory framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage – learning and development requirement
The National Curriculum
All children begin to learn from the National Curriculum at the start of Year 1 and continue until they leave school at 18. The part of the National Curriculum covered in the Infant School is called Key Stage 1 and it lasts for two years (Years 1 and 2). A new curriculum has been introduced which Year 1 and year 2 are following.
Phonics, Reading and Writing ( English)
Phonics is taught every day in every year group. We follow the Letters and Sounds scheme as recommended by the Department for Education. The children take part in reading activities daily, either individually or in small groups, and they cover a wide range of books that are banded according to their levels of difficulty and the skills required. All children are encouraged to write across a range of genres and for a variety of purposes. In Key Stage 1 we use a book based approach to Literacy and use a particular book to support our learning. As well as encouraging their creativity we help them to develop their spelling and handwriting skills using the Nelson Scheme.
Maths is taught in every class daily. We focus on a practical approach with a strong emphasis on using and applying skills. We follow the Abacus scheme of work in school which also allows the teachers to upload activities that the children can access at home. Mathematics is differentiated to ensure that every child is challenged and achieves to the best of their abilities using a range of resources including Numicon. The children are expected to master all four operations - addition, subtraction, multiplication and division - by the end of Year 2, as well as develop an understanding of shape, space and measure and basic geometry.
Personal, Social and Health Education
PSHE is regarded as a central and valuable area of the curriculum and children take part from the nursery onwards. PSHE is an integral part of our curriculum and the themes run throughout our creative learning approach. The children are encouraged to consider things such as what is fair and unfair and what is right and wrong. Sharing opinions and explaining points of view is a skill that is taught within an atmosphere of safety and respect, as is recognising, naming and dealing with feelings. The children are encouraged to consider how their behaviour affects others and how to deal with bullying. The children also learn about healthy and safe lifestyles, including maintaining personal hygiene and rules for keeping safe, both indoors and whilst outside.
Preparing to Play an Active Role as Citizens
We have a School Council, which consists of 2 members from each class in Y1 and Y2. They regularly meet with Mrs Van Der Merwe (the deputy head) to raise issues of concern in the classroom. Recent issues raised have included how the dinner hall operates and the choosing of playground equipment. We encourage children to have awareness of others who aren’t so fortunate and we support various charities in school by fundraising. We actively take care of the environment by trying our best to walk to school, taking part in bike projects and with the development of our school pond and meadow area.
Our KS1 curriculum is carefully planned to ensure relevant and coherent learning experiences for children, using assessment to build upon their previous learning.
We are committed to the provision of a broad-based Creative Curriculum in KS1 through a creative, practical approach. Topic lessons - Computing, PE (two lessons), Music, Singing, RE, History, Geography, Art, Design and Technology and Science are taught using National Curriculum objectives.
Each half term is divided up into a Topic area, class texts and any school visits are planned within this topic to allow for links and connections to be made accross all of the childrens' learning. Where possible, sessions are cross curricular and may focus on more than one subject a session using the topic as a stimulus.
On Line Safety
We believe that internet safety education is a vital element of the curriculum and a crucial part of young people’s development. We learn about e-safety throughout the school year and always take part in Safer Internet Day. We celebrate the many positives of the internet and raise awareness of the issues that children may come across online. For more information please go to ‘useful links’ on the school’s website where it has links to ‘Think you Know’ and ‘CEOP’. These websites provide advice and safety tips to help manage online safety issues.