In reception class, children have a home visit before beginning so that children can meet their teacher/early years practitioner in the emotional comfort of their own home. Initially they begin settling in for half days, building up to full time for the third week.
Ambler early years believes in learning through play and following the needs and interests of the children. Very skilled practitioners observe the children and plan their next steps from those observations. Learning, next steps and play are individualised, ensuring all children move forward at their appropriate level. The more able are extended and those who need more support have learning play activities tailored to their needs. Early years practitioners will always provide open-ended activities which allow children to access learning at their own level.
We follow the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum provided by the government which includes seven areas of learning. Three prime areas: Personal, Social and Emotional development; Physical development and Communication and Language. These are the fundamental building blocks on which all future learning is based. The specific areas of learning follow: Literacy development, including reading and writing; Maths development, including number and shape, space and measure; Understanding the World, including science and information technology and Expressive Arts and Design, including painting, drawing, imagination and drama. By the end of reception year children should have reached the Early Learning Goals or achieved a Good Level of Development (GLD).
Ambler follows the Letters and Sounds framework to teach reading and writing. We teach formal phonics using the Jolly Phonics system. Small children begin at phase one, differentiating and hearing sounds, moving through phases two and three when they learn the letter sounds and blending skills. We teach short carpet sessions and follow these with tailored one-to-one reading sessions with the class teacher. Small group writing sessions happen weekly and are run by the class teacher.
We have a free-flow environment, allowing children to learn both inside and out. We have all-weather clothing, enabling children to explore splashing in the rain and crunching in the snow.
Throughout our environment, which provides opportunities for children to experience deep play, are concepts of literacy and maths. For example, children have opportunities to write shopping lists in make-believe shops and count out quantities using real money. This is followed by an organised trip to local shops.