What to expect in Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)
Young children are encouraged to learn and develop through play and exploration. The adults support this through guidance and teaching of skills using a child-centred approach. We believe that all of our children are unique and should be supported on their individual learning journeys to ensure the best futures for them. Child-centred and play-based learning increases engagement in children and higher levels of engagement often lead to higher levels of progress.
To support your children at home, we would first recommend ensuring you are doing lots of reading. This can be listening to stories or looking at pictures to read stories together. Additionally, as the year goes on, we will provide more information about the EYFS and your child’s class teacher will regularly update you on your child’s progress and how you can continue to support their individual learning journey at home.
In Early Years, Maths is a continuous journey where we build on our pervious knowledge and master our skills. Our learning is enhanced within areas of provision, where we learn many lifelong skills that will continue to develop throughout our education journey.
Writing and stages of writing
Our writing journey starts for the first day in FS1, and continues to develop over the years. Children move through a variety of stages before they are able to form letters. We start with gross and fine motor activities; they support muscle growth and development. Next, we see children mark making, using line, shapes and squiggles, and giving them meaning. Then the children start their phonics journey which supports the writing of letters, words and sentences.
At QIS, we use Read Write Inc (RWI) as a method of teaching reading and writing. This is centered around learning the sounds of the letters (phonics), and then blending them together to read words. Once the children can blend words, we provide them with books that match their level of reading. The children also learn to break down words into individual sounds in order to write them. We prepare our learning environment to encourage the children to develop their writing and reading skills. We build the first steps and give them the tools to become independent life-long readers. We aim for all our children to become fluent, confident readers who are passionate about reading.
Talk 4 Writing
At QIS we aim to foster a love for reading, where children are encouraged to become storytellers in their own right. We use Talk for Writing to develop key skills such as, creative writing and vocabulary.
Talk for Writing enables children to imitate key language they need for a particular story before innovating it, adapting the key ideas in the story and finally inventing their own story.
Developing Gross Motor Skills
In Early Years, we have a hands-on learning approach, where children are posing questions, testing ideas and making decisions independently. This happens often when children become involved in constructive play. Constructive play occurs when children use toys, loose parts or materials to build or create something new. (Junk model robots, kitchen roll binoculars, towers made from blocks and boxes turned into rocket ships are often familiar sights within our Early Years block.) This requires various skills such as: planning, drawing, cutting, assembling, moulding, stacking and testing. Construction play can really help to extend children’s ideas, imagination and allow then to make sense of the world around them. It encourages them to think critically, problem solve and build on their social skills. This also helps to improve their fine and gross motor development.
Our Early Years students are exposed to a weekly Music session where they can develop their gross motor skills. Throughout each session, they focus on developing coordination, improving balance and are given a better understanding of rhythm through dances and movement activities. Our children also enjoy learning lots of songs and rhymes that assist them with their sound recognition and language. During Music lessons, they are exposed to and learn about many different musical instruments that develop their fine motor skills.
Our Arabic lessons are focused on learning the letters of the Arabic Alphabet and exploring the world around us through engaging and creative activities. Children explore all areas of learning in their Arabic classes and develop their speaking, listening and mark making skills, as well as developing their knowledge about the world around them through physical and creative activities.
In Early Years, STEM is a collaborative process, which encourages children to raise questions and explore their interests. In a playful way, children are familiarised with scientific processes and learn to think scientifically. Hands-on inquiry-based STEM education lays the foundation for social and emotional intelligence, raises children’s confidence, and fosters their abilities to plan and reflect.
Our children have access to an outdoor area that has many benefits for their development. Children are more engaged and excited about their learning, they deepen their knowledge and understanding of the world and can develop their gross motor skills.