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What is the Reception year all about?

Please find lots of information about the Reception year below. You can also download 4Children Parents Guide – which explains the curriculum in more detail.

The Reception year is the final year of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum which is set for children aged 0-5 years. In the Early Years we promote learning through play and encourage children to develop their own interests so they are able to become independent and skilled learners. The Early years foundation stage is based on four simple but very important principles:

Children access the curriculum through 7 areas of learning:

Prime Areas:

  • Personal social and Emotional Development
  • Physical Development
  • Communication and Language

Specific Areas:

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

The areas of learning are all interlinked so that children are learning lots of different things in different ways at the same time.

This is how children learn about their feelings, build relationships with and develop empathy for their peers. They will be develop their understanding of behaviour and working together.

Children will develop their fine motor skills including pencil grip and the control needed to form letters. They will also develop their gross motor skills, coordination and develop an understanding of how to stay fit, healthy and safe.

Learning to speak clearly, increase our vocabulary and understanding of words. Developing the skills of listening to others and maintaining attention in a group.

Children will develop the skills they need to learn to read and write. They will take part in daily phonics lessons, share books and begin to write for purpose.

Children will learn about counting and understanding numbers. They will also learnt about how to talk about shapes, the size of objects, time and money.

This area of development helps children make sense of the world around them, exploring their environment, technology and families.

Children will express themselves through role play, music, construction and artistic media.

A Day in Reception

8:45am – school starts

The doors open and you can bring your child in and settle them, this is also a good opportunity to speak to adults in the room about any relevant information we need to be aware of.

9:00am- Read Write Inc

Read write Inc is the programme of phonics we use and all children will take part in phonics learning at this time every day.

Throughout the morning:

Children are offered a ‘FreeFlow’ Environment where the classroom doors are opened and pupils will follow their own learning journeys, whether inside or in the outdoor area. Snack is also offered throughout the morning. Children are encouraged to help themselves independently.

11:45 –Lunch

Children are taken down to the hall to have their lunch. They then play in the Reception outdoor area with their own midday assistants.

12:40pm –Maths learning

We all sit down together after lunch and develop our mathematical skills.

Throughout the afternoon

Children can continue their own learning journey’s in the free flow environment. At the end of the afternoon we sit down together and have our fruit snac and a story or some songs.

3:00pm- school finishes

Parents wait outside the gates of the Reception outdoor areas and the teachers hand children over directly, any serious issues about the day will be communicated by the class teacher.

Other adult led activities such as teacher led groups, fine motor activities, philosophy, communication activities, PE, Yoga, Forest Schools and more will happen at some point during the school day, however these depend on the day of the week and the time of the academic year.

Sharing Learning

At Highwoods we want you to be as involved in your child’s learning as possible. We use an online learning journey ‘Tapestry’ to record and monitor the children’s learning.

This website allows us to record children’s learning as photographs, videos and written observations which can be uploaded on to a secure webpage that you can view through an app on your phone or a tablet. Parents can also upload photo’s and videos of what children do at home, which allows teachers to get to know the children’s interests.

Snack and Lunch

Children are offered snack throughout the morning from a range of healthy choices from yoghurts to rice cakes with a choice of milk or water to drink. Parents are asked to make a small termly contribution to enable us to purchase this additional snack.

Every child is entitled to a free school meal everyday. We encourage you to take advantage of this but if you prefer you can provide a packed lunch for your child each day. Our Menus.

We sit down as a class and have our fruit snack together at the end of the day.

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