Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)
In our school our EYFS class is our first class, children start in the September in the year in which they turn 5. The curriculum is based on 17 areas of learning which are broken down into milestones culminating in the Early Learning Goal (ELG). Children's learning is focused on three characteristics of effective learning: playing and exploring, active learning, creative and critical thinking.
Teaching in EYFS is centered on pupils interests, the 17 areas are planned for through a theme, such as 'growing', or centered around a book, activities are planned for inside and out so children can access the 17 areas of learning. Through skilled questioning teachers take pupils learning forward guiding them to discover new skills. Most learning is child initiated a small proportion is teacher led, such as handwriting, letter formation, maths skills, reading and phonics.
The children have a daily phonics session (see section on phonics) which starts at phase 1/2 or 3 depending on the individuals starting points.
EYFS children learn to read using the books available in school which are banded in colours.
Key Stage 1 Curriculum
At North Crawley CE school we designed a curriculum topic planning two year cycle which covers all aspects of the National Curriculum. The following is an overview of each topic and the subject content. We created the curriculum in 2014 and have edited it yearly to meet up to date requirements and take into account pupil and parent responses. Our pupils are excited about the topic themes and gain much from the enriched curriculum through the varied trips, visits and visitors. There are times when we plan learning from pupil interest, local or national occasions i.e. a child returning from a trip abroad/ a child's family celebrations (such as Eid/ Hannukah)/the Royal Wedding/Olympics/Rugby World Cup/Milton Keyne's 50th birthday. It's important that learning is connected to real events where possible, is up to date, relevant to pupils interests, lively and engaging.
Pupil's are taught skills discretely and activities and tasks are planned for to apply these to the theme. Maths is taught discretey but where possible linked to the topic and real life problems.
We use a wide range of books at North Crawley and are building colour banded sets of 'real' reading books. We also use schemes such as Oxford Reading Tree. Your child starts to learn to read as soon as they start school. Words are displayed all around and are highlighted throughout the day. Your child will learn key words initially, cvc word (consonant vowel consonant) i.e cat, dog, mum etc. They learn to decode with phonics and learn sight words. We focus on the first 100 key and tricky words to begin with and increase in line with individual needs.
Your child will bring a book home, these are colour banded, starting with lilac which are books without words so that your child can share the book with you and talk about the story, this is an important stage of reading, knowing the orientation of a book, that stories follow a system of begnning, middle and end, and to engage your child in talking about books. The books progress from key words, to short sentences all the way up to chapter books.
Please read with your child at home at least 3x a week, research shows that children who are reading and sharing books at home regulalry are more proficient readers at an earlier stage.
Phonics is a system of sounds in words, there are 44 phonemes that children need to learn in order to decode words in the English language. We don't follow a scheme, teachers plans and teach lessons using the 'Letters and Sounds' guidance and a varierty of resources, such as 'Phonics Play', an online phonics programme, and various resources in schools.