At Bitterley CE School we believe in providing a secure foundation for future learning and development for our children. Our EYFS curriculum allows children to develop interpersonal skills, build resilience, confidence and self-assurance and become creative thinkers. We aim to provide a fun, secure, challenging and rich educational environment that enables each individual to thrive with positive relationships that
support children to become strong and independent!
We place a strong emphasis on the religious, spiritual, moral and cultural development of all our pupils which shapes how we behave, what we say, how we build relationships and how we learn. Every child is recognised as a unique individual. We celebrate and welcome the differences within our school community.
Bitterley EYFS curriculum is designed to develop the characteristics of effective learning:
● Creating and thinking critically – children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.
● Active learning – children keep on trying if they encounter difficulties and enjoy their achievements.
● Playing and exploring – children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’.
We use a growth mindset approach to promote positive attitudes to learning which reflect the learning behaviours and skills needed to promote responsibility for learning and future success.
The EYFS framework includes 7 Areas of Learning and development that are equally important and inter- connected. However, 3 areas known as the Prime Areas are particularly important for igniting curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building children’s capacity to learn.
Bitterley’s EYFS Curriculum engages all children and ensures that all children make good progress from their starting points, recognising that children develop and learn at different rates. Several key resources are used to support the development of the curriculum including Development Matters, Little Wandle Letters and Sounds and the Jigsaw PSHE scheme. In addition, for Year Reception children, White Rose Maths and the Kapow music scheme are utilised.
Wherever possible the children’s own interests are used by the adults to engage the children in higher level thinking and deeper learning. Child initiated/led learning is valued and encouraged. Each area of learning and development is implemented through planned, purposeful play, and through a mix of adult- led and child-initiated activities. The children have the right to the outdoor environment all the year round and access to the area is available daily throughout the sessions.
Enrichment opportunities are planned into the curriculum carefully and include visitors to school such as police officers, nurses, “Open the Book” church outreach and Derek the Dental Dragon. We plan exciting visits to build experiences for all children including local places of worship, libraries, castles, farms and theatres.
Parents are valued as first educators and every effort is made to include and inform them of the EYFS curriculum whilst providing them with the tools to continue learning at home. Parents are encouraged to share their child’s achievements through ‘WOW’ moments, and these are used to inform next steps when planning and are celebrated within school. Strategies to develop these strong partnerships include ‘Stay and Play’ sessions, Phonics, Early Reading and Early Maths workshops, online Learning Journals via Tapestry, WOW moments shared using Tapestry, class pages on the website and an open-door policy.
At Bitterley, we ensure ongoing assessment is an integral part of the learning process. Staff observe pupils and these observations, alongside parental contributions, are used to plan next steps. We use Tapestry, an online learning journal, to record learning which is shared with parents. In Year Reception individual writing books are used to record teacher-led learning in Literacy. Tapestry online Learning Journals are used to record teacher- led learning in other areas of learning for example Maths and R.E. Children have their own Special Scrap books which they use independently to record work they are proud of.
When a child is aged between two and three, we review their progress, and provide parents/carers with a short written summary of their child’s development in the Prime Areas. This progress check identifies the child’s strengths, and any areas where progress is less than expected. If there are significant emerging concerns, or an identified special educational need or disability, a targeted plan to support the child’s future learning and development involving parents/carers and other professionals is implemented. At the beginning of the Reception year we complete the statutory Reception Baseline Assessment in addition to our school assessments. At the end of EYFS we complete the EYFS profile for each child. Pupils are assessed against the 17 Early Learning Goals.
The teacher and teaching assistants that work with EYRS meet regularly and receive necessary training linked to the SDP. The Reception teacher takes part in cross school and external moderations and attends regular pupil progress meetings to ensure progress is being made for each individual child.
Through the delivery of a well-planned and challenging curriculum we aim that the children will leave the EYFS with transferrable skills needed to start KS1. This will be measured at the end of Reception as to whether the pupils have achieved a Good Level of Development. We aim that the pupils will leave the EYFS being able to read, write simple sentences, display confident early mathematical understanding, have good personal, social and emotional skills, show a good level of listening and be resilient learners who are happy, strong and keen to learn.