What does your child learn at school each day? Find information about our curriculum design here. If you want to learn more about our curriculum, please speak to a member of staff.
At Sir James Knott Nursery School, our unique curriculum celebrates the endless potential of young children, with the goal of nurturing self-motivated, life-long learners. At the core of our approach is the belief that children are innately talented and motivated investigators, capable of sophisticated inquiry across all seven areas of learning and the characteristics of effective teaching and learning.
Our aim is to cultivate the skills that are at the foundation of a life of happiness and success: cooperative and individual problem-solving, analytical thinking, emotional intelligence and empathy, cultural competence – as well as early literacy and math skills and real-world preparation for our young children.
Our emergent curriculum is play-based, but far more than "play." It is a series of expertly guided investigations that grow from the children's own interests, which immerse them in the process and joys of real discovery. Weekly project-based planning allows flexibility that is essential for basing teaching and learning around children’s interests and enquires at their own pace and stage of development.
Projects may last a few days, weeks or even a few months. At Sir James Knott Nursery School children have time to explore their interests, to pursue questions, create theories and extend their knowledge and understanding. Project work allows children to play around with ideas in a concrete way that matches their developmental and intellectual abilities. Children come together in groups to work on projects, building collaborative problem-solving skills as they share ideas and knowledge.
“Children must be taught how to think, not what to think”
In order to ensure that all children achieve their potential we enhance the curriculum by providing children with the opportunity to:
· Feel secure and loved whilst learning in a home-from-home environment.
· Use open-ended resources to encourage imagination, creativity and investigation.
· Play and learn alongside supportive and nurturing staff who are dedicated to the development of our young children.
· Take part in a range of cultural experiences and visits into school.
· Attend ‘Forest School’ and ‘Beach School’ across the year showing an interest and awareness of our immediate and wider local environment.
· Complete Home Learning Challenges set via Tapestry to encourage parents and families to participate in fun ways to help their children develop skills and accomplish things together.
· Access the calming and cosy Nursery Library regularly to encourage a love for books and provide a quiet, dedicated space to look at books alone or together.
· Take Nursery books home from our Lending Library regularly, to encourage families to love reading and haring books together.
· Access a large and well-resourced Mud Kitchen area that allows for creativity, communication and acts as a base for cooking up a storm!
When children enter our Nursery School, our dedicated and highly-qualified staff will assess children using our baseline expectations.
After this, children will regularly be observed and assessed using a range of formative and summative assessment styles.
At the end of each term, staff will use an assessment tracker that summarises if children are ‘on track’ or ‘not on track’. This will inform planning and any interventions that must begin to take place.
Children receive one to one or small group interventions to address any barriers to learning that may prevent them from being on track and reaching their full potential. Our staff are dedicated to diminishing the gap between all pupils.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is a statutory framework that sets the standards that all early years providers must meet to ensure that the children in their care learn and develop well, stay safe and are kept healthy. Within this framework, there are 7 areas of learning, with 17 'Early Learning Goals' to be aimed for by the end of children's Reception year in school.
The Framework is split into 3 sections:
1. Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning
2. Prime Areas
3. Specific Areas
Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning
The most successful ways in which children learn and develop are through playing and exploring, learning actively, and creating and thinking critically. These are called the "Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning" and are one part of the Early Years Foundation Stage.
* Playing and exploring- children investigate and experience things, and 'have a go'.
* Active learning- children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements.
* Creating and thinking critically- children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.
The prime areas of learning are made up of the following areas of learning:
* Communication and Language
* Personal, Social and Emotional Development
* Physical Development
The specific areas of learning are made up of the following areas of learning:
* Understanding the World
* Expressive Arts and Design
Below are some useful publications giving more detail to the early years foundation stage phase