Early Years Foundation Stage at Mougins School
Our Early Learning Centre is made up of Nursery and Reception classes, for children aged 3-5.
Children’s experiences of school at this age should be happy, active, exciting, and fun. We believe every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their potential. Children develop quickly in these early years and a child’s experiences before the age of five will have a major impact on their future life chances. We work very closely with parents to understand and observe the development of each child; we are a real partner to each family in terms of supporting the child’s growth. We believe that parents are the people who know their children best, hence we value our partnership with home in determining ways to support each child to ensure they reach their true potential.
Our learning environment
We follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) of the English National Curriculum, which prepares the children for Key Stage 1. We focus on learning through play, exploring, being active, and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside. We encourage children to develop important social skills, such as turn-taking, sharing and independence, which help them in the next stages of their learning.
The guiding principles that shape our practice in the early years are that children are born ready, able and eager to learn. They actively reach out to interact with other people and the world around them. Development is not an automatic process, however. It depends on each unique child having opportunities to interact in positive relationships and enabling environments.
At this age, children demonstrate their understanding through seven different areas of learning and development. The three primary areas of development are:
- Communication and language
- Physical development
- Personal, social and emotional development
As they grow, these foundation skills will help them to develop further skills in four specific areas. These are:
- Understanding the world
- Expressive arts and design
We take all seven areas of learning into account in our daily lessons and activities. One experience may provide a child with opportunities to develop many skills and concepts across several areas of learning. As a school, we embrace a STEAM approach, encouraging hands-on experimentation, allowing children to make their own discoveries and develop critical thinking skills.
Phonics teaching and learning is a key part of the early years stage, to develop early reading and writing skills. French play learning is another key feature of our early years provisions. Pupils from Nursery onwards begin to learn French in a relaxed, immersion-style environment. Through free play and games they begin to develop their French language skills and grow in confidence in the language.
If you visit our Nursery or Reception classes, you will see a range of activities taking place such as role-play, practical games, painting, cutting and sticking and reading in the book corner. You will also see the outdoor classroom in operation, with equipment such as bikes, cars, sand and water.
A gentle transition to school life
We understand that starting school is a huge milestone in a child’s life, and it can be a daunting experience. At Mougins School, we work hard to make sure that our young learners have a smooth transition to school life. They quickly begin to feel comfortable and ready to learn under the dedicated care of our passionate early years staff. Parents can drop off at the door and be reassured that their child is in good hands. We have a dedicated quiet space with specially designed mattresses for nap time, and children are invited to bring their own blankets to help them feel secure and relaxed. Early years pupils enjoy delicious, locally-sourced, organic hot meals cooked on-site. Pupils eat in their own class with peers, enjoying the social side of eating together.
Tapestry online learning journal
In our early years classes we use an online learning journal called Tapestry that allows us to build a picture of each child’s achievements and development throughout the school year. During the year, teachers upload notes on the development of skills, including communication and language and social and physical skills, along with photos, pictures of artwork done by the children and even comments and conversations, to build up a holistic picture of progress. The journal is collaborative and both parents and teachers can add comments, photographs, and observations. Are you considering Mougins School for your child?
Children are born ready, able and eager to learn.