Leamington Hastings

Church of England Academy

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Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

Our EYFS unit in school contains Reception and Nursery age children. 


Time is spent developing each child's personal, social and emotional development including self-awareness, self-confidence, building relationships, understanding contexts and managing behaviour.  We also develop each child’s independence, resilience and persistence.


We follow the Development Matters Framework which consists of 3 Prime Areas (Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development) and 4 Specific Areas (Literacy, Mathematics, Expressive Arts and Design and Understanding the World).  An expected child will reach a ‘Good Level of Development’ by the end of the Reception year. This is achieved through meeting the Early Learning Goals.


Our curriculum is delivered in a variety of ways, taking into account the specific needs of individuals and the class as a whole.  Lessons may be taught as a whole class, small groups or one-to-one, where necessary. The curriculum is delivered through a balance of taught sessions and free-flow continuous provision in which children have the opportunity to independently practise, develop and explore skills and knowledge in any of our learning spaces (an indoor classroom, a conservatory and a large outdoor classroom). Lessons may also take place in any of the outdoor areas in the school, including the wildlife garden containing a pond. 

Learning areas and activities are designed to encourage child initiated play and learning with adults observing and facilitating where necessary. All Nursery and Reception staff have iPads which are used to capture the children’s learning through their play. These observations are linked to the EYFS objectives which allows us to plan learning around the children’s interests and needs. These observations will be emailed to parents termly.

Phonics is a 20-minute, daily, practical whole class lesson, where phonetic knowledge is taught through phoneme spotters, searching through real books, matching words to pictures, decoding alien nonsense words and dictation, along with the games found in Letters and Sounds.  We work through the individual phonemes of Phase 2 and the digraphs and trigraphs of Phase 3 before applying this in Phase 4. The children enjoy CBeebies Alphablocks which demonstrates the skill of blending phonemes - http://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/shows/alphablocks 
Correct pronunciation of the individual phonemes can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BqhXUW_v-1s

Phonics is essential to our teaching of reading.  The children will learn to blend phonemes together to read words. We have a large range of reading books for the children to practise their blending skills. These books will be sent home for you to support your child with their reading where they will be able to demonstrate their emerging reading skills at home. 

The teaching of handwriting is important and occurs frequently throughout the week. Correct pencil grip is taught and encouraged, as is the correct formation of each letter through the different letter families (curly caterpillar letters, ladder letters, one-armed robot letters and zig-zag monster letters). Examples of these can be found on our handwriting page. 

Writing is linked to all areas of learning and enjoyment is the key. Children in Reception have the opportunity to write in a variety of contexts and are taught to think about the sounds they hear when attempting to write words. Writing is encouraged throughout the environment, in all areas of learning. The children also take part in small group guided writing sessions with adults and when ready they will form simple sentences and use basic punctuation in their writing.


Mathematics within the EYFS is split in to two areas - Number and Shape, Space and Measure. These areas of learning include counting, sorting, matching, finding patterns, making connections, recognising relationships and working with numbers, shapes, space and measures. Children are encouraged to apply their mathematical skills in all areas of the continuous provision as well as whole class teaching. A maths mastery approach is used, focusing on a number a week whilst incorporating maths skills such as simple and practical addition and subtraction calculations. We will look at solving problems including doubling, halving and sharing. Children will become confident when using everyday language to talk about size, weight, capacity, position, distance, time and money to compare quantities and solve problems. Children enjoy using the number blocks series to support their learning. https://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/shows/numberblocks


The Reception children will take part in two PE sessions with a qualified sports coach per week. Nursery children will take part in core strength sessions, taught by Mrs Wooldridge who is our PE leader.