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Reception - Robins & Wrens

Welcome to Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) at Nene Valley Primary School - Robins & Wrens. We love to play and learn together both inside and outside in all weathers.


Welcome to Reception

We are a Reception unit, combining two class groups - the Robins, taught by Miss Katie Brown and the Wrens, taught by Miss Jennifer GIlbert. We are lucky enough to have two EYFS Practitioners; Mrs Caswell and Miss Hampton support across the phase.

From September 2021, there were some statutory changes to the Early Years framework which include the Reception Baseline Assessment, reformed Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum statements and a revised end of year assessment (Early Years Foundation Stage Profile). 

Our curriculum involves a balance of child-led learning through play and adult-directed activities. Our indoor classroom is zoned into areas - a role play area, message centre (mark-making), sensory/messy play area, creation station, loose parts play, a construction zone, reading area and small world area. Outdoor learning opportunities are part of our everyday provision; we have dedicated access to an outdoor area which has a quiet zone with a storytelling chair, den building zone, large construction area, stage, art zone, water and sand play, mud kitchen with pulley, imaginative play tunnel and moveable physical play blocks. We operate a workshop approach, allowing children to access a range of resources independently to pursue their own fascinations. We then enhance the zoned areas to support and extend learning, linked to children's interests and projects we are following. 

We use high quality, engaging books and poems as the basis for our projects. Previously we have covered Journeys, Pets, Sticks, Space, Superheroes, When I Grow Up, Staying Healthy and Our World. We also recognise the importance of linking learning to the children's own interests and fascinations.

We ask that all children have a named set of spare clothes and suitable clothing to learn outdoors in school at all times, including a pair of named wellington boots and a waterproof coat.  They also need a pair of plimsolls for indoor learning.  


Reading and sharing books

We start teaching phonics as soon as children start school full-time. We follow a scheme called 'Little Wandle, Letters and Sounds Revised' which you can find more information about here: Initially, Lilac reading books are sent home for you to share with your child to develop their story telling language and vocabulary. When children are beginning to blend sounds together, individual reading books are closely aligned to the sets of letter-sounds that children have learned and can apply. We encourage you to read with your child as regularly as you can for 5-15 minutes at a time; daily if possible. Children's confidence to read to you will develop as their phonic skills grow. Listening to stories is just as important to develop children's vocabulary and language skills. It's best not to limit this to the books they bring home - share a range of books, magazines, stories, information books and poems. 

To keep you informed, we will post a weekly update onto Tapestry sharing the letter-sounds and tricky words (words that cannot be read purely using a phonic approach) that we have taught that week. Revising these at home will help your child to develop their phoneme-grapheme recognition which is an important skill in reading and writing. You can find more information on the enunciation of each phoneme on the 'Little Wandle' website.

Reading books will be changed on Tuesdays and Fridays each week. Please put your child's reading book inside their reading record and then into the class box in the morning if you would like it to be changed.

Physical Development & P.E. 

In the EYFS, we develop children's gross (large) and fine (small) motor skills through a range of physical opportunities provided both indoors and outdoors. We cover spatial awareness, negotiating space, ball skills, ways of travelling, learning to throw and catch with precision, manipulating small resources to achieve a goal and developing an effective pencil grip. All of this can be covered during our usual provision.   

To see when your child has PE please click on this link to view the PE timetable.

Please ensure that your child comes to school dressed in the appropriate kit on these days.  As the weather improves please can you ensure your child has their water bottle and has had sunscreen applied.

Trips and Visits

In Reception, we enrich the children's learning through a range of visits and visitors into school. For example, in the past few years we have explored our local area with a walk to the local post box and to Woodston Library. Wood Green Animal Shelter came in to help us learn how to look after pets and representatives of Nene Valley Railway have visited to teach us about the history of our school site, local railways and the old sugar beet factory. In previous years we have visited Sacrewell Farm at Christmas time and have explored the wild outdoors in the summer time at Fineshade Woods, building dens, creating natural art and doing minibeast relays! Our trips can change each year depending on our learning projects. 


Christmas Production:  At Christmas, all children in the phase perform a nativity, full of songs and dances. Please don’t miss it!