Throughout our Early Years Unit, we focus on learning through play, through carefully planned provision. In addition to our indoor classrooms, both year groups have an outdoor area resourced with bikes, muddy kitchens, sand pits, and much more. Our extensive school grounds enable the children to participate in Forest School, and enhanced outdoor play.
Teaching and Learning
The environment acts as 'third teacher' allowing children to learn from an enriching play space both indoors and outdoors.
Children learn through their own initiated play and staff are able to scaffold and extend this learning through interactions.
Staff skillfully set up invitations to learn and provocations that will extend thinking in the environment.
Adult-Supported activities and led input sessions
The children have short adult-supported activities throughout the week which focus on the different areas of our curriculum.The learning takes place in small groups to support children further.
In Reception, there are two sessions each day, which are 'directly taught input sessions'. One is our All Aboard Phonics session and the other is a Maths session influenced by Power Maths scheme.
In Nursery the children come together at the end of each session to join in phase 1 phonics - music, songs and rhymes or story time.
Key Person Approach
Firstly, hello from us, Mrs Andrews, Mrs Cannon, Mrs Payne and the Early Years Team. We will all work together as your child’s ‘nominated key person’.
Primarily your class teacher and support staff are your child’s key person. We operate a buddy key person system whereby if someone is off your child will always have another key person in.
A key person is a member of the team with specific responsibility to help your child feel safe and cared for so they are emotionally secure, as well as planning for and recording their developmental needs.
In Acorn Class - Reception children have Mrs Cannon as their key person and Nursery children have Miss Moore. If one person is off the children have the other person there to support them.
In Conker Class Reception children have Mrs Andrews and Mrs Payne as their key person and Nursery children have Mrs Mayhew. If one person is off the children have the other person there to support them.
Both classes have Ms Martin and Mrs Wells as buddy key people.
Assessment and Learning Journey
We are using a piece of educational software called ‘Tapestry’. Every child in Early Years, at Saxmundham Primary School will have their own individual learning journal. By logging on with a secure username and password you will be able to access your child’s journal. Parents are only able to view their own child’s journal and all information is stored on a highly secure server, which is monitored closely.
Tapestry online learning journeys allow you to view some of your child’s observations and photographs from their time in Early Years. We also use Target Tracker as an assessment tool.
During the day, we will observe your child while they play to find out more about their interests and how they are progressing in their learning.
Each week we will share a general blog about what we have been interested in and show a variety of activities they have done as a group. We will try to capture individual children’s moments but cannot show it all, as we would rather play with them and teach them in the moment, than stop their learning to get the camera out.
We value the knowledge and understanding you have and would love you to add observations and photographs of your own as well as share your comments. We love to hear about learning and WOW moments from home which we will share with your child in class.
Due to children playing in close proximity with their friends it does not reflect a true picture of their time in Early Years, if photographs are only of a single child. Therefore photographs of your child may appear on their friends' learning journeys. We ask that you do not share these images on social media or send them to family and friends, if another child is in the photo.
Early Years Approach in Detailed Booklet
Early Years Slideshow to Follow Soon...
Fun in the Forest sessions with Ms Denny, is an inspirational process that offers children in Reception opportunities to achieve, develop confidence and self-esteem, through hands-on learning experiences in a local woodland environment. By introducing Forest sessions at Saxmundham Primary, we aim to nurture an understanding and respect for natural places where children experience nature at firsthand through a series of engaging and achievable tasks. The Fun in the forest experience brings learning to life and improves a child’s ability to work cooperatively whilst also offering them opportunities to take risks, make choices and initiate learning.
During these sessions, children experience all sorts of woodland activities that help them to build an understanding and appreciation of the woodland as well as learn together in a totally unique way. The activities are always hands-on and may require the use of a range of tools. The sessions will also allow time for peer mentoring and for the children to reflect on their experiences in the Forest.