Lace Hill Academy

Reception

Spring Term

 

Communication and Language

This is one of the prime areas of learning in the Early Years setting, the other two being PSED and Physical development. It is essential at this age and stage of development that children have the opportunity to talk and explore ideas with their peers and adults within the setting. There is a vast amount of research in to this area of development. Here is just one quote to support this:

‘By 5 years of age a child’s vocabulary can predict his/her educational success and outcomes at age 30.’

ICAN: ELDP (2012)

Personal, Social, Emotional development.

  

Personal, social and emotional development is the second of the prime areas the children in need to achieve. It is important that they have an understanding of the boundaries within the setting, sharing and looking after their friends and taking care of equipment. We change the resources in the outside learning area frequently to link in with the children’s learning and interests. We encourage the children to learn through exploration and play is the facilitator that encourages children to be independent in their learning.

Physical development

Physical development is the third prime area of learning. It encompasses both gross and fine motor skills and Health and Wellbeing.

The children have enjoyed taking old electrical equipment apart to find out what is inside. This is great for fine motor control and it teaches the children how to safe with real tools and equipment.

Children developing their writing and fine motor skills. We encourage children to use their ‘pinchy’ fingers to promote a good pencil grip.

 

Literacy

We have all had so much fun in Literacy this term. We have read The three Billy Goats Gruff, Jack and the Beanstalk and The three Little Pigs. The children have enjoyed retelling the story through drawing a story map and some children have been able to write their own stories, using their phonics skills to sound out the words and then write them phonetically to create a sentence.

Mathematics

Mathematics is split into two aspects, Number and Shape, Space and Measure. The children have been working towards achieving their ELG. Part of this is to be able to add two amounts, a knowledge of doubling, halving, sharing and to be able to order numbers to 20. At this stage in their development the children have apparatus to support their number work. This could include multi-link, number squares, numicon shapes and number rods.

Understanding the World

Understanding the World has three aspects of learning. People and Communities, The World and Technology. As it is spring we have been talking about growing and what a seed needs to grow. We have read Jack and the Beanstalk, Jasper’s Beanstalk and the Tiny Seed which are all good for generating discussions about growing. The children planted a bean seed The seed was then planted and the children took it home to nurture. We celebrated Chinese New Year and how the animal years came about.

 Expressive Art and Design

 Experimenting with different media is one of the aspects in expressive art and design. The children love dinosaurs, it is one of their favourite interests both boys and girls. Here the children worked in groups to design a large collage piece with a painted background and cut out dinosaurs. They used cotton wool and white paint for the clouds and transparent counters for the berries.

Expressive Art and Design encompasses dance, drama and role play. During our focus on Jack and the Beanstalk we lucky to have a professional acting group ‘Perform’ visit school. The Reception children had the opportunity to retell the story through dance and mime.

Autumn Term 

Communication and Language

This is one of the prime areas of learning in the Early Years setting. Practitioners need to support children’s attention and listening skills and make use of children’s comments to prompt the use of language rather than overusing questions.

Jigsaw puzzles are a great tool to help children to work and talk together. They also promote spacial awareness and colour co-ordination. Here the boys are sorting the pieces into the different areas of the puzzle.

Outside learning is very important in Early Years. The boys had made a ‘lake’ and were discussing what they could add to their creation.

Halloween and lots of pumpkin scooping. We had the regular orange pumpkin along with the different coloured gourds. We had lots of discussions about what we might find in the different varieties and how different they looked, smelt and felt.

Personal, Social, Emotional development

Personal, social and emotional development is the second of the prime areas the children in need to achieve. This area supports children to learn to get on with others and make friends, understand and talk about feelings, learn about 'right' and 'wrong', develop independence and ultimately feel good about themselves.

Great team work on display here! The boy and girls were sharing the truck rides and taking turns at pulling each other along.

During the morning self initiated time the children decided to make a ‘long bridge’ by the end of the morning it was trailing all around the classroom and out of the door. They then started to measure the bridge using a different variety of measuring equipment. This was a lovely activity to observe as there was so many different aspects of learning to comment on. PSED - working together, maths – measuring using standard equipment, communication and language – discussing their design.

The maths team here ordered the number tiles from 1-100 all the way down the corridor. It was great to see the boys discussing how to manage their challenge. They asked for a 100 number square then decided together to take all the multiples of 10 out of the pack to start with. They were very proud of their achievement.

Physical development

Physical development is the third prime area of learning. Research has shown that physical activity in young children can enhance concentration, motivation, learning and well-being.

Generally, our lives have become more inactive and our children have less opportunity for physical activity which is why it is important for them to be able to access physical activities in the Early Years. Physical activity can involve both fine and gross motor skills.

Gross motor encompasses crawling, balancing, jumping, riding a bike, activities that include the whole body.

In November the reception children had the opportunity to participate in the Bikeability Scheme which was held at school. Riding a bike is great for the children’s core strength and balance.

Fine motor skills include gripping a pencil or paintbrush, threading, dough manipulation, jigsaws and puzzles, any activity that involves small movements with the hands and wrists.

Using fine motor skills to draw the pumpkins before we cut them open to finds out what was inside

Literacy

 Literacy encompasses reading and writing skills. We teach reading skills through daily phonics sessions. The children learn the sound and the letter shape that corresponds with that sound. The children regularly play ‘teachers’ using the teaching resources from phonics in their role play.

The boys are playing phonics teaching role play. They are saying the sounds then asking each other to blend the sounds together.
We have been continuing to build on the children’s language skills by story mapping our focus story/text. Above are two examples of stories we have read. The first one is the story of Rama and Sita and the 10 headed demon monster, Ravena, and the second one is the story of The Nutcracker. Story mapping is a great tool to help children understand the structure and characters in a story and it also provides the opportunity for us as practitioners to broaden children’s vocabulary which is essential at this age.

Mathematics

In maths we have been consolidating children’s 1:1 counting skills and teaching them how to use the numicon to help them understand the concept of addition. The children are becoming more familiar with the value of the different numicon pieces by looking at the shape, number of holes, colour and weight of the shapes. We have introduced the word ‘equivalent’ which the children can use correctly when they see two numbers of the same value.

 Using the numicon interactive software on the whiteboard to add two numbers together.

Mathematics is split into two aspects, Number and Shape, Space and Measure. Number activities can be incorporated into lots of daily learning opportunities. These include a self-registration system where children register by putting their face on a number 10 numicon shape which we then count in registration time, numicon number 10 to count lunch choices, date, counting in groups of 2,5,10 and many more.

This half term we have investigated symmetrical patterns and what the term symmetry means.

Understanding the World

Understanding the World has three aspects of learning. People and Communities, The World and Technology.

For People and Communities we have been learning about different celebrations and religions. Diwali for Hindus, Hanukkah for Jews and Christmas for Christians.

The children loved playing with the Diwali artifacts which we had on show in the class.

The children joined in Children in Need Day and helped to raise £346 in school.

We had our first very cold day at school this half term. We obviously hadn’t planned for this but the children were so excited when they came in to register we decided we had to go with the children’s interest and excitement and go and explore the icy conditions as a learning opportunity. The children learnt so much through their participation in playing in the frost and ice.

Expressive Art and Design

Experimenting with different media is one of the aspects in expressive art and design.

For our Remembrance Day assembly all the children helped to create a poppy wreath. We made the leaves by making hand prints with green paint then we cut them out. Some children painted poppy outlines and some drew poppy pictures freehand.

Role play is an important aspect of Expressive Art and Design and the children are provided with many opportunities to express themselves both inside the setting and outside.

 After our discussion about Remembrance Day the boys and girls went out and started to build an aeroplane from the crates. They then put the sieves on their heads to represent the tin helmets worn by the soldiers.

The autumn term finishes with Christmas celebrations. The children have had a great time making and decorating for their families and of course we couldn’t finish school without a visit from Father Christmas, it was so wonderful to see the children’s faces when he walked in the classroom.