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Early Years

Children in our Early Years department focus on early learning goals, following a Topic- focussed curriculum, based around play. At Fordwater School all children in the Foundation Stage have an Individual Education Plan and a Learning Journal.

There are three prime areas of learning:

  • Communication and Language – This area of learning underlies all we do and includes the use of switches, Makaton signing and PECS (the Picture Exchange Communication System).
  • Physical Development – This area develops fine and gross motor skills. It involves the use of objects and construction toys, as well as small and large indoor and outdoor equipment. This area also promotes pupil health and self-care.
  • Personal Social & Emotional Development – This area provides opportunities to develop self-confidence, build relationships and develop independence and play skills. There is a separate outside area exclusively for the younger children.  This provides them with daily access to activities which include sand, water, a play house, bikes, an adventure playground and a range of toys.

There are four specific areas:

  • Literacy – This area of learning uses stories, songs and poems to develop listening skills, comprehension, expressive skills and pre-reading skills. Children will look at books and develop pre- writing and writing skills.
  • Mathematical Development – In this area, children will use songs, games and imaginative play to practise sorting, matching, problem – solving, early number skills, as well as shape, space and measure.
  • Understanding the world – This area allows for imagination and responding to experiences, expressing and communicating ideas. Children will be able to explore and find out about the world around them, including other cultures. This area also includes the development of basic ICT skills.
  • Expressive Arts and Design – This area covers music, movement and art & craft activities (painting, printing, playdough). It includes a role-play area that can enable child and adult initiated learning and ultimately be used to promote all areas of learning.

We recognise that some children will benefit from a predominantly sensory-based curriculum while others will require a greater emphasis on physical development. Each child will follow a differentiated, personalised curriculum