Head: Mrs Rachel Lane

T: 01452 530 310

E: admin@finlay.gloucs.sch.uk

Finlay Little Learners

Welcome to our Finlay Little Learners page

This is our first year of pre-school and it is a great adventure for us all.

Children can attend the term after they are 3 years old. Parents are entitled to 15 hours of pre-school ‘Free for 3 & 4′ funding.

The Curriculum

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The staff at Finlay Little Learners plan for each unique child around the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. We aim to enable your child to learn through play in a safe and nurturing environment. The

Pre-School’s curriculum follows the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) guidelines and it is organised into the 7 areas outlined below.

All learning that takes place within Pre-School comes from the children’s interests and ideas, with the aim of these activities being to develop children’s skills and concepts across all the areas of learning.

Where possible learning will take place inside and outside, within the Pre-School setting. We will also look to take the children on local trips and visits when they will support the learning taking place.

The specific areas build upon the learning in the prime areas. Each area of learning and development is implemented through planned, purposeful play and through a balance of adult-led and child initiated activities.

At Little Learners we respond to each child’s emerging needs and interest, guiding their development through warm, positive interaction. As children grow older it is expected that the balance will shift towards more adult-led activities to help prepare children for Reception.

Pre-school work closely with the Reception the reception class and the children have regular opportunities to join Reception for stories, songs and play. This ensures a smooth transition from Pre-School to School and breeds familiarity in the children for what could otherwise be a very daunting step to ‘big school’.

A typical session

Morning session is ran from 8:30 until 11:30. The children enter the Pre-school through the gate in the learning garden (KS1 playground). As children come through the gate parents are required to sign their child in and a member of the pre-school staff will take the register. Upon entering the pre-school room the children will self-register by putting their face up on the bus and then putting their coat and book bag away on their peg.

The session will start with a brief carpet time, sharing news and talking about the different activities going on throughout the session. The children will then go on to free flow play.

During the free flow part of the session the areas that the children can access independently are; the creative area, maths area, construction area, mark making table, small world area and the reading corner. The children also have the opportunity to use the learning garden where they can access the; water area, sand area, den building area, mud kitchen and bikes and trikes.

Some of the examples of adult led activities are as follows:
¨ Cooking
¨ Name writing
¨ Painting
¨ Role play
¨ Number Land
¨ Ring games out on the playground
¨ Activities linked to the theme
¨ Playdough
¨ Nature Walks
¨ Den Building
¨ Phonics input

Half way through the session the children have snack with their key worker at the table where they learn to make healthy choices, discuss hygiene and table manners. This also is a time where the children build relationships with the other children in their group as well as their key worker. At the end of the session the children gather as a whole group on the carpet and listen to a story or sing songs. The session finishes at 11:30 . The children are taken to the main office where they meet their parents for home time. Parents are required to sign to say they have collected their children. The afternoon sessions run in the same way however the children are dropped off at the office at 12:15pm and collected from the classroom door at 3:15.

Learning through play

Learning through play underpins everything that happens within Pre-School. The different activities that are carried out during session range from painting and drawing to construction and free play. Through all these activities the children are learning a variety of different skills linked to all areas of the EYFS curriculum. For example, playing in the water and sand tray will provide the children opportunities to develop mathematical skills as well as developing their communication and language when working with each other.

Children also have the opportunity to sit and read books in our ‘Book Corner’ and later on in the year will begin to learn some of their letter sounds and numbers.. Although this is not a formal part of the Pre-School curriculum, we believe that when children are ready for the next steps in their learning then we will always look to move them forward as quickly as possible. Our children also have access to the school library once a week.

Our Stay and Play sessions are a fantastic opportunity for you to support this process and take part in some of the learning experiences with your child.

Key Persons

Our Pre-School operates a key person system. This means that each member of staff has a small group of children for whom they are personally responsible. Your child’s key person will work with them to ensure that what we provide is right for your child’s particular needs and interests. They will ensure that your child is settled in Pre-School and will keep you informed of their progress throughout the year. Your child’s key person will liaise with parents, informing them of the different activities they have been taking part in, they are available at the beginning and end of a session to speak to you if you wish. They are responsible for the planning and assessment of the children in their group, in addition to ensuring your child’s emotional needs are met, offering comfort and reassurance to the child when needed. They will also assist with any additional needs, for example toileting, if necessary.

Finlay Little Learners follows the Foundation Stage Curriculum, underpinned by the Early Years Outcomes. It builds on the skills and knowledge that your children already have. Our approach to learning is through structured play-based activities which encourage your child to learn at their own pace and ability. Play is a key way in which children learn, it is both enjoyable and challenging. It is important to remember that children do not learn passively, they learn best by doing and being actively involved in their learning.

Your child has already learnt a great deal by the time they join us. As these early years are the most formative years of a child’s development , parents and staff together play a crucial role in establishing appropriate attitudes and approaches to learning. The year your child spends in pre – school is the first of two years of the Foundation Stage, which ends at the end of the Reception year.

We aim to ensure the curriculum in the Foundation Stage is broad and balanced, that social, emotional, physical, aesthetic and intellectual development are provided through a range of activities based around structured play.

Children’s individual interests and abilities are always taken into account in planning their play but we also, in accordance with the Early Years Outcomes, support, foster and develop children’s learning in the following areas: Communication and Language; Physical Development; Personal, Social and Emotional Development. These three prime areas are strengthened and applied through: Literacy; Mathematics; Understanding the world & Expressive Arts and Design.

If you are interested in attending our pre-school, please telephone the office or come in to pick up a prospectus and admission form. You are also welcome to come in and have a look around.

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