Welcome to St John’s Nursery
We are really pleased to welcome you to St John’s Primary School. Starting school is a big step and we want you and your child to settle in as quickly and easily as possible.
Our Foundation Stage consists of two nursery classes, a morning nursery and an afternoon nursery both offering 15 hours per week and two reception classes.
Miss Devaney is our class teacher in Nursery.
Mrs Nicol is another teacher who supports Nursery throughout the week.
Miss Young and Mrs Forsythe are our Nursery Nurses.
Miss Darcy is our Teaching Assistant.
The nursery has a Key Person system which ensures your child has the opportunity to form a strong relationship with a particular adult, who will get to know their individual strengths and personality. Your child will be allocated a Key Person who they will work with individually and in small groups and who will be the first point of contact for any questions you may have.
Early Years Foundation Stage Vision
At St John’s, we believe that learning should be fun, purposeful and challenging.
Our outstanding environment encourages exploration, curiosity and creativity, as well as the physical development of our pupils.
Through our effective curriculum and stimulating environment, we aim to develop strong, confident and independent children with a real passion for lifelong learning.
Positive attitudes and effective partnerships enable us to develop the whole child, meeting individual needs in a safe and secure environment in which differences are accepted and celebrated.
‘’Every child deserves the best possible start in lift and the support that enables them to fulfil their full potential’’ (EYFS, 2012, p.2).
Foundation Stage Curriculum
Within the foundation stage we plan a range of practical, play based activities to ensure that children are given a range of opportunities to develop skills and demonstrate their learning.
Weekly activities are planned and developed from the children’s interests. This keeps the children engaged and excited about learning.
The EYFS is made up of seven areas of Learning and Development all with a strong emphasis on learning through play. All areas are interconnected to the characteristics of effective learning which are:
- Playing and exploring- engagement
- Active Learning- motivation
- Creating and Thinking Critically-thinking
The seven areas of learning are split into three prime areas and four specific areas.
Prime Areas (these work together to support development in all other areas)
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Communication and language
- Physical Development
Specific Areas (essential skills and knowledge)
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
Personal Social Emotional Development
Our aim is to support the children in developing a positive sense of themselves whilst building positive relationships and developing respect for others. We do this by providing a variety of opportunities to enable the children to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings and have confidence in their own abilities. All children are encouraged to increase their independence skills, whilst developing a positive attitude to learning.
Communication and Language
Through planned activities we aim to provide the children with opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves and to speak and listen in a range of situations. The children are encouraged to listen attentively, talk about their experiences and use language in a variety of ways to communicate with adults and peers.
We provide opportunities for children to be active, interactive and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement through a wide variety of indoor and outdoor experiences. Children are taught to move confidently and imaginatively with increasing control and coordination during outdoor play activities and in P.E. lessons. Children will develop increasing skill and control with small apparatus such as bats, balls, hoops, beanbags and quoits. Fine motor control will be developed using tools, scissors, small construction equipment and malleable materials. We also discuss the importance of keeping healthy with the children through physical activity and healthy diet.
This area of the curriculum incorporates both reading and writing. Through daily phonic sessions we encourage the children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Within nursery phonics begins by teaching the children how to listen to and identify sounds and noises. We explore a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) as well as having daily story times.
After reading ‘The Three Little Pigs’ we decided to read ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ to see what trouble the Big Bad Wolf was causing in this tale. We think ‘Little Red’ had been in our classroom because she left red glitter in our water tray and ingredients for us to make red playdough with out in our kitchen. The children made pictures of ‘Little Red’s’ coat using different materials in the creative corner. We played lots of games this week and are doing well in learning how to wait for our turn during board games. We also talked about who our friends are in Nursery and some of us made ‘welcome’ cards for them.
We provide children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers. We use a variety of stories, songs, games and practical activities to teach children concepts such as calculating, simple addition and subtraction problems. Together we explore shape, space and measure in our everyday environment, encouraging the children to use mathematical language to describe and compare shapes, position, size and quantity.
Understanding the World
This area of learning develops the children’s understanding of the environment, people around them and features of the natural and man-made world. Children will be encouraged to be curious, ask questions, investigate and explore different aspects of the world around them. We provide a wide variety of opportunities to enable children to make sense of their world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
AUTUMN - We have noticed some changes outdoors this week in Nursery, the leaves on the trees have started to change colour and there are conkers all over the ground of our forest school. The children have been very excited about these observations and spent time collecting conkers during their playtime. We have talked about Autumn and what seasonal changes and animals we might see during this time of year. We made handprint hedgehogs and used our fine motor skills to create playdough ones. We also made ‘Conkerpillars’. To do these, the children counted a small number of conkers, pushed a pipe cleaner through the middle and carefully glued two eyes on.
Expressive Arts and Design
Children are encouraged to use their imagination and express their ideas and feelings using a wide range of media and materials and through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.
Recording and reporting
All children are regularly observed and assessed. From these observations and assessments the children are set individual targets to ensure each child reaches their full potential.
Various methods are used to record observations: written notes, assessments, photographs, samples of work and observations using Seesaw software. All observations are placed in individual ‘learning journey’ folders and books. This then informs us of the next steps to provide for children’s learning and development.
Floor books are also used to record examples of children’s work, thoughts, ideas and interests throughout each topic.
Your child will have the opportunity to do a range of diverse activities, including cookery, gardening, digging, painting, water, sand and messy tactile play. Our curriculum is a combination of indoor and outdoor learning, and we encourage the children to explore and experience the outdoors in rain or shine. We also visit the school library on Fridays where your child has the opportunity to read books and share stories.
Please remember the nursery session is filled with lots of exciting experiences for your child, such as playing in sand, water, painting, gluing and messy play, not to mention the freedom to explore the outdoors in all weathers! Please send your child into school in clothes that enable them to explore freely and experience all the activities on offer.
For details about our curriculum or to view /download our latest H.A.S.T form, or annual long term plan please go to our curriculum page here
Once the children are settled in we would be happy for you to come and help in the Nursery; there are always lots of hands on activities to be part of and your help is always appreciated! We really hope you enjoy being part of St John’s Nursery, and we look forward to getting to know you and your child. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to come and speak to us.
How to support your child at home
Share books with your child
Discuss books and stories- characters, events, endings and so on
Talk about the numbers and colours you see when you are out and about
Allow your child to cut out and stick pictures from old magazines and catalogues
Sing nursery rhymes and poems together
Explore the weather- rain, shadows, snow, and wind
Talk to your child at every opportunity
In the Early Years we are very interested in the achievements your make outside of school. A magical moment may be something new your child has learned to do such as zip up their own coat or write their name for the first time. It may be a significant moment such as sleeping in their own bed all night long or helping you to clean and tidy the house. You may like to share a fun activity from home or an adventure you had at the weekend or on holiday.
Magical moment sheets can be downloaded by clicking here. Alternatively they are available from reception and nursery staff.
Nursery and Reception Newsletter
For more information about the EYFS click on the links below