South Africa Class
Welcome to South Africa Class!
In our Nursery, the children are introduced to a warm and welcoming school life where the children learn through play. The school day offers children a range of practical and creative activities and develops oral, literacy and numeracy skills as well as placing emphasis on independence and social interaction. The EYFS curriculum is tailored to cater for each individual child’s needs; ensuring that children are making continuous progress whilst maintaining confidence and a can-do attitude. Children can join us at any point during the year, and can begin their learning journey with us the term after their third birthday. We focus on various topics throughout the year; Ourselves; Celebrations; Super Heroes, Space, Growth and Change and the Seaside.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum consists of the 7 areas of learning and development, which are split into 3 prime areas (PSED, C&L and PD) and 7 specific areas:
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development (PSED) - Develops the confidence and independence of children both individually and as part of a group.
- Communication and Language (C&L) - develops children's ability to communicate effectively through the development of speaking and listening skills.
- Physical Development (PD) - develops children's skills in fine and gross motor movements, improving control and coordination of the body and help children to learn to move and handle equipment efficiently.
- Literacy - develops early skills in reading and writing and included phonics.
- Mathematics - develops children's understanding of number, measurement, shape, space patterns and quantity.
- Understanding the World (UW) - develops children's understanding of the world around them helping them to investigate their environment, community and use of technology.
- Expressive Arts and Design (EA&D) - children learn to communicate through colour, shape, sound, texture, dance, role play and stories.
We have P.E. every Tuesday. You are encouraged to leave the PE kits at school and we will send them home at the end of each term. PE kits should include: suitable footware (Trainers or plimsolls), a t-shirt (in their house colour) and shorts/tracksuit bottoms. If your child is unable to take part in PE, you must provide a signed note, stating the reason why.
By reading stories aloud to your children every day, you are forming a link for them between reading, and comfort and love. Children thrive on repetition, and so by reading the same much-loved stories over and over, you are hard wiring their brains for success! The more you read, the more the story “belongs” to your child.
We need to do everything we can to ensure children get the reading habit while they are very young, before technology gets a foothold in their lives. For this reason, every week, the children are going to take a book home (every Friday) for you to read it with them. They will also take a reading record booklet, where you can make comments about your children reading progress. Make reading to your children feel like a treat and show curiosity in what you are going to read!
Please teach the children how to treat books nicely, making sure they return the books to school every Monday in the same conditions they took them home.
Phonics: Teaching phonics in nursery will grow children´s vocabulary through role-play, discussion, building sentences and using productive questioning. It places huge emphasis on developing children´s love of reading through story times.
During the first half term, the nursery children will have lots of opportunities to develop familiarities with stories, nursery rhymes poems and songs. Then, the children will be taught the sounds of letters, to finally blend the sounds into words around the summer term. This will give them a good start before going into the Reception Class.
WOW moments: Please don’t forget to fill out ‘WOW Moments’ sheets if your child has done amazing things you want to share with us. There are spare ones on the Parents Notice Board outside the classroom.
Home learning grids: At the beginning of each term you will receive “Home learning grids” related to the topic we are learning about at school. Please choose at least one activity each week and bring it to school on a Thursday. At the end of term all homework will be on display in the hall for parents / carers to view.
Ideas for supporting literacy at home:
- Playdough: good for fine motor skills when squashing, squeezing, pressing, prodding, rolling etc.
- Writing Materials: notebooks, shopping lists, diaries, letter writing sets, whiteboards…
- Magnetic letters on the fridge: saying the sound each letter makes, making your name and other simple words like cat and dog.
- Playing I Spy in the car and around the home.
- Phoneme (letter) hunts: how many things can you find in your bedroom beginning with a “ssssss” sound?
- Using pegs to develop fine motor skills to pick up different things.
- Using magic wands to write letters and patterns in the air. Good also for gross motor skills!
- Books and puppets: reading and sharing stories, including traditional and fairy tales. Books by Jill Murphy, Julia Donaldson, Eric Carl. Puppets are a great investment to go with stories to develop language and storytelling skills.
- Sand making patterns with fingers or using plastic letter shapes.
- Water: use nets and foam letters to fish out letters. Using gel sparkly letters.
- Sand and water: use jugs, funnels and bottles to develop language related to capacity (full, empty, half full, etc.
- Messy play: making patterns and writing letter shapes and name in corn flour and water, washing flakes and shaving foam.
- Pipe cleaners: threading beads on to them to develop fine motor skills needed for pencil control and writing. Making letters with them. Could you make your pipe cleaner in to an “S” shape?
- Using outdoors: going for walks around the local area, in parks and woods. Talking about the world around you to develop language and questioning skills. How is the weather changing? What is happening to the trees? What animals might we find in the woods? How many green things can you find?
- Looking for print in the local environment: reading street signs and shop names together. Looking to see how many letters you can recognise on labels and signs. Why do we need street signs? Why do shops have names and signs?
- Painting with paint on large sheets of paper- patterns, letter shapes, etc.
Ideas for supporting numeracy at home:
- Play dough: using biscuit cutters to make shapes of different sizes. Can you make 2 big squares and 2 little squares? How many squares do you have altogether? Can you make 5 worms to go with number five? Which is the longest/shortest? Can you make a long and a short snake? How many legs do you need to make for your spider? If you make a birthday cake, how many candles would you need when you are 4 (using candles for counting is good when making dough cakes and muffins). Can you make a big snail and a little snail?
- Magnetic numbers on the fridge: putting numbers on the fridge to place in order. Matching other magnets with each number to show the value of each number, e.g. 2 flag magnets to go with number 2.
- Playing number I Spy around home and outdoors: how many numbers 2’s can we see on cars, in shops, on doors, etc.
- Number hunts: can you find 5 leaves/ sticks/ conkers in the garden? How many dogs can we see when we walk to the library? How many yellow cars are parked in our street? How many trees in our garden? How many slugs can we find eating our plants?
- Counting songs and props: in nursery we use numbers and props when singing counting songs to support our counting and number skills. There are lots of good counting and song books in all good book shops and on Amazon. Using 5 plastic ducks in the bath with numbers when singing Five Little Ducks.
- Sorting socks: can you sort the socks into pairs? How many stripy/ spotty/ red socks do we have?
- Using dice: roll a dice, do that amount of jumps, claps etc. Roll two spotty dice, how many spots altogether?
- Sand and water play: having foam numbers in the bath. Using jugs and bottles to use language related to measures.
- Threading number cards to develop number recognition and fine motor skills.
- Pipe cleaners: threading beads on to them to develop counting skills. Making numbers with them. Could you make your pipe cleaner in to a number 2?
- Shopping and maths at home: can you put 5 green apples in the bag? Can we find the biggest melon? Which potato is the biggest/weighs the most. Can you find the bottle with the most / least water in? Sharing and counting sweets/ raisins. How many blue smarties have you got? What will happen if you eat 2?
If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to arrange a meeting with me after school by ring the school office.