Welcome to Windwhistle Pre-school Class!
Your child’s learning journey in Windwhistle School often begins with our Pre-school class. We look forward to working in partnership with you as we continue the important work you have already carried out at home.
Learning in Pre-school is play-based; we use a mixture of adult-led and child-initiated activities to help your child build the confidence to succeed. We take children’s starting points and plan fun, exciting and engaging activities. We form strong, nurturing relationships. Our approach aims to value each child’s uniqueness, provide an enabling environment, develop relationships and thoughtfully engage with learning and teaching. We use home visits and a staggered transition, tailored to the needs of each child, to help us get it right; from the very start.
Pre-school follows the Early Tears Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum. Children’s early learning is organised into seven areas. Our focus in Pre-school is on the prime areas of learning in the EYFS curriculum: Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Communication and Language and Physical Development. However, we also learn about Maths, Literacy, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design. We use the following themes to guide children’s learning. These are based strongly on developing an early love of reading and a solid knowledge of stories; as we firmly believe, and know, reading quality children’s literature helps build a strong foundation for future success by developing children’s language and communication skills.
Autumn 1: The ‘Bear’ Necessities – we learn about ourselves and our families; our Pre-school rules and expectations. We are introduced to stories about bears which have a strong rhythm and repetition.
Autumn 2: Down to the Woods – we learn about our key person and our key groups (named after woodland animals); and develop our relationships. We read stories to help us think about our feelings and emotions, based around woodland animals.
Spring 1: Once upon a time – we are introduced to classic children’s tales such as the ‘3 Little Pigs’. The continuation of using stories with repeated refrains helps us develop our vocabulary and understanding of how stories are structured.
Spring 2: Tell me a Story – we continue our learning with traditional tales. We use role-play and ‘story square’ to develop develop children’s communication and language; as well as build the foundations for later storytelling and writing.
Summer 1: Tales of tails! – our learning is based around animal stories and this can be dinosaurs, farm animals or mini-beasts! We use stories as a springboard into an exploration of the world around us.
Summer 2: A World of Stories – our chosen stories help develop children’s understanding of the wider world and the diversity and uniqueness of people around them. We learn about the importance of kindness and respect; and continue to develop our ability to work together.
As well as following the programme of study for the EYFS, we use the Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning to help us guide and plan the learning we want children to do. These characteristics include children’s willingness to have a go, concentration, resilience and making links. Our planned learning reflects each child’s unique development and underpins our effective practice.
We aim to:
- Provide the best for every child – recognising barriers to learning early on and providing the necessary support.
- Provide high quality care – ensuring we keep children central to all we do.
- Provide an effective curriculum – carefully planned for holistic progression, based on children’s interests and aiming for deep understanding.
- Help children to learn – by showing, guiding, observing, joining in, teaching – and playing!
- Know what children know – using careful observation and assessment; and our knowledge of children’s learning and development, to plan and provide for children’s learning.
- Support the development of crucial skills – such as focusing attention, managing emotions, planning and using information, being resilient, and waiting their turn.
- Work in partnership with parents – we respect and value the work parents do and we listen to you and give you information about how your child is doing.
We aim for a happy, joyful time in Pre-school where children feel valued and grow in confidence.
The EYFS curriculum is currently under development and details will be provided very soon. For further information, please contact the school.