PREP SCHOOL and EARLY YEARS CURRICULUM POLICY
Our aim is to fulfil the potential of each child in our care. In its most narrow definition our remit is to prepare our pupils thoroughly for the entrance examinations of their chosen senior school. However we believe that we are preparing children not only for their senior school but also for the life that lies ahead. We regard these school years from 3 – 11 as forming the base on which our pupils will build their future education. We therefore aim to give them as broad an education as possible, during their years with us. We therefore place a strong emphasis on a broad curriculum. The pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is also given strong emphasis. These aims are also included in the Day Nursery.
At The White House Preparatory School, Woodentops Kindergarten and Day Nursery we aim to:
- have high expectations of the children and of ourselves
- raise levels of attainment for all pupils, enabling them to achieve their personal best
- develop confident, disciplined and enquiring learners who are able to make informed choices
- foster a lover of learning
- foster self-esteem and personal responsibility, linked to respect for the needs and feelings of others
- facilitate considerate and positive relationships between all members of the school community
- ensure equal opportunities in relation to gender, race, class, special needs and belief
- value and respect others
- provide a happy and safe environment
Promote a thoughtful attitude towards the immediate and wider community
The Early Stage: Day Nursery, Kindergarten, Pre-Reception and Reception
The Early Years curriculum is planned in accordance with the ‘Childcare act 2006’ and the revised framework for the ‘Early Years Foundation Stage 2012’, and the safeguarding and welfare requirements within this. We aim to manage the setting well so that the good organisation of the school means that we are effective in the following outcomes;
Characteristics of effective teaching and learning
Playing and exploring – children investigating and experiencing things and ‘have a go’.
Active learning – children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements; and
Creating and thinking critically – children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.
The Early Years curriculum identifies seven distinct Areas of Learning, together with constituent Early Learning Goals. These are divided into three prime areas, which lay the foundations of learning, and four specific areas. These areas are;
The prime areas
Communication and language – involves giving children 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.
Physical development involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
Personal, social and emotional development involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate
The specific areas
Literacy development involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest.
Mathematics involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition
Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
Expressive arts and design involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.
Teachers ensure that a range of strategies is used in learning and that the teaching is varied and adapted to suit the needs of the individual child. Careful and flexible planning by class teachers includes the involvement of specialist teachers in either Ballet, Drama, French and Music in the Day Nursery, Kindergarten, Pre-Reception and Reception.
In each area children’s progress is recorded and learning experiences are planned to ensure that individuals are appropriately challenged (next steps) and have all their foundations for future earning securely in place. Some children will come from nurseries that follow the Development Matters Document and some will bring related records with them.
The Early Years profile is completed at the end of Reception Year and is used to inform planning for
Key Stage 1: Years 1 and 2
Key Stage 1 of the National Curriculum begins formally in Year 1. Class teachers are responsible for teaching, Literacy, Numeracy, Science, Topic ( History and Geography), RE, PSHE, Computing, Art/Craft. Subject specialist teachers are employed in French, Sport, Drama, Music and Ballet.
Key Stage 2: Years 3, 4, 5 and 6
In Years 3 – 6 the curriculum is broadly in line with the National Curriculum. Latin is introduced in Year
5 and Spanish in Year 3. Class teachers are responsible for Art/DT, Music, RE, PSHE, Computing, History and Geography. Year 6 pupils are prepared in English, Mathematics also Verbal & Non-verbal reasoning for entry into their senior schools at 11+. Subject specialist teachers are employed in French, Sport, Drama, Music and Spanish
Throughout the school British Values and Spiritual Moral Social and Cultural development is an integral part of the curriculum. It is not solely taught in isolation and is the responsibility of all staff who come into contact with children. It is delivered through subject teaching, PSHE, circle time, assemblies, church
assemblies, charity/ community involvement, outings, guest speakers and roles and responsibilities within the school.
Trips and outings
Children in the Day Nursery under the age of three are not taken on educational trips but will visit the local park or common. All classes are expected to go on at least one outing each term to complement an area of the curriculum and full use is made of local facilities of museums, art galleries, theatres, historical sites and sites of scientific interest. Pupils in Year 3 take part in a teambuilding day at an adventure centre to encourage and foster support and confidence in the class. Pupils in Years 4 – 6 are offered the opportunity of a residential Outdoor Education trip in the Summer term.
Homework is discussed with parents at the curriculum meetings at the beginning of each term. In September a homework timetable is given out to parents of pupils in Years 3 – 6. The purposes of homework, the types of homework set and advice on helping your child and also communicating with teachers via the Homework diary is also explained in these meetings. In key stage1, the children have reading daily and maths or English or both as weekend homework. The children will also have times tables and spelling to practise for weekly tests. In Reception children will have reading every night and weekend homework either literacy or mathematics in the spring and summer term.
The homework diary is signed daily at home and checked by the class teacher.
Inclusion and SEN
The SENCO’s role is to
- support and encourage inclusive practices throughout the school and ensure that all pupils have equal opportunities and equal access to the curriculum
- support staff in identifying pupils with difficulties and planning teaching strategies, liaising with parents and outside agencies, co-ordinating extra help that may be required and offering support to small groups of children.
Assessment and reporting (Refer to relevant policies)
Assessment is an essential part of the teaching process. Regular assessments are made of pupils’ work to establish a level of attainment and to inform future planning. Teachers use assessment information to track the progress of individual pupils. The Principal and Head teacher use it to monitor the effectiveness of the teaching and curriculum.
In service training is provided in order to update and improve standards of teaching and learning. Initiatives in curriculum development, teaching and learning styles are monitored by the Principal and Head to ensure teachers are well equipped to deliver the curriculum effectively.
Policy will be reviewed annually
Policy reviewed: Sept 16 By: Headteacher Policy reviewed: Sept 17 By: Headteacher Policy reviewed: Sept 18 By: Headteacher To be reviewed: Sept 19 By: Headteacher