Learning in the Early Years
The Foundation Stage is a distinct phase of Early Years education that takes place from when a child is born until they are five. At Comper we follow the statutory Early Years Foundation Stage Framework 2021. This under pins all that we do. The EYFS Framework has seven areas of the curriculum. All the work that we do at Comper is striving to support each child to reach their potential in each of these areas. The curriculum areas are split into:
Three Prime Areas:
- Personal, Social and Emotional development
- Communication and Language
- Physical Development.
Four Specific areas:
- Understanding of the World
- Expressive Arts and Design.
Follow the link to read the EYFS Statutory Framework 2021:
The Curriculum at Comper
Our Curriculum is underpinned by the non statutory guidance 'Birth to 5 matters.' This supports our planning and assessment of the children. If you would like to look at this document, please follow the link:
Our Curriculum Intent
The skills and knowledge that we teach at Comper are based in part on responding to the children's interests and partly through core texts and topics that we feel are important for our children to ensure they have a rich and varied early childhood experience.
At Comper our intention is that the curriculum will:
- Spark the children's curiosity in the world around them,
- Celebrate the diverse community they are from
- Support them to be courageous in the risks they take in their learning
- Foster a life long love of learning
- Be aspirational to give them the best start to their early education and ensure they are ready to move confidently on to reception and year one at the end of their time with us.
How do we teach our curriculum at Comper?
At Comper we follow a combination of child initiated, play based learning and adult directed learning. The children learn in small groups, 1:1 and as a whole class sometimes too.
Our adults observe the children in their care closely and as a result, they know them exceptionally well. They identify children's interests and next steps in their learning and either respond by teaching them their next step in that moment through what the child is already engaged with (we call this 'responsive planning') or by ensuring that the knowledge and skills they require are woven into adult directed planning and teaching time and supported by the rich and varied resources we plan for them in their environment. By working in this responsive way, we are able to celebrate the unique child and meet each individual's needs while ensuring the children receive a broad and balanced curriculum.
What is learning through Play at Comper?
Play is essential for children’s development, building their confidence as they learn to explore, relate to others, set their own goals and solve problems. Children learn by leading their own play, and by taking part in play which is guided by adults. 'Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage.'
At Comper we follow a play based approach to delivering our curriculum in all our settings. The children spend the majority of their time in free -flow child initiated learning. However, this is supported, and guided by adults so that they gain the appropriate skills and knowledge they need as they play. Play is the best way for children to learn at this stage in their education - why?
- It is fun and children have a right to play (recognised in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child (1989))
- It supports their wellbeing
- It promotes deep involvement in their learning
- Develops independence and self confidence
- Provides opportunities for developing key skills and knowledge across all areas of the curriculum
Teaching in the Early Years is a craft that involves many different skills and types of interactions with children. There are lots of ways in which adults will help children learn at Comper. They will use the following teaching methods; communicating and modelling language; showing, explaining, demonstrating, exploring ideas; encouraging, questioning, recalling; providing a narrative for what they are doing; facilitating and setting challenges. The practitioners will also be ensuring that the children are learning in an enabling environment that supports rich learning opportunities and exploration.
Planning for your child
At Comper we use a combination of 'responsive planning' and pre-planned activities and experiences.
Both of these planning methods follow the observation, assessment and planning (OAP) cycle. On-going formative assessment is at the heart of our practice. This enables practitioners to assess what children know, understand and can do, as well as taking account of their interests and dispositions to learn. Practitioners then use this information to plan children’s next steps in learning and monitor their progress.
Assessment - Observation of your child and their online Learning Journal (Tapestry)
We make both written, photographic and video observations of your child throughout their time with us. We will record these on Tapestry, our online Learning Journal platform (please see the Tapestry Tab on our website for further information).
We use these observations to help inform our assessment of where they are in their development and what the next steps are in their development. There is no fixed number of observations that your child will get each week, but they will be a 'Focus Child' twice per academic year. This is a time when our practitioners particularly focus on your child to get an in depth understanding of who they are and where they are in their learning. You will be contacted by your child's class teacher or key worker when it is your child's turn.
The learning journey is also a wonderful way to communicate with you how your child is developing and what they are experiencing during their time at Comper. We spend lots of time listening to the children chat to us and talk about their lives and their learning. We try to include some of their voice in their learning journey. You can also share home experiences with us too which helps the children feel a strong connection between home and school.
There will be two parents evenings per year. These are a time when we can discuss your child's development and give you an idea of where they are and what their next steps are. This is a chance for the family and school to celebrate the children. It is also an opportunity for you to raise any concerns, should you have them.
Pupil Progress Meetings
Three times a year your child's key worker or teacher will meet with the Headteacher, and other members of the senior leadership team to discuss in depth how your child is developing. This is a reflective space where we can ensure your child is making good progress in line with where they should be for their age. At this meeting we can identify and discuss any gaps in their learning so that we ensure we are planning and teaching to close those gaps.
At Comper there will be a number of opportunities throughout the year for you to come into school and meet with your child's key worker or teacher to discuss your child's development. At this meeting the staff will share how they feel your child is progressing. This is also an important opportunity for you to ask any questions and share any concerns you might have. If you would like an interpreter at this meeting please ask and we will try out best to provide one for you.
Of course , there are lots of more informal opportunities at the end of day pick up to catch up with the adults that teach your child.
If you feel you need an appointment with your child's keyworker or teacher before the parent consultation please arrange one with them personally when you collect the child or contact the office and they will forward your request to the correct member of staff.