Children enter the Early Years department at the age of 2½ or 3 years. They remain in this department until the age of 5, when they progress into Year 1, which is the first year of Key Stage 1.
It provides a safe, secure and stimulating environment where children discover that learning is fun, and where the foundations of friendship, co-operation, social skills and care for others are laid.
The curriculum here follows the Foundation Stage Profile which is divided into 6 areas of learning:-
Personal, social and emotional development
Communication, language and literacy
Knowledge and understanding of the world
Each learning area has its own goals which set out the skills, understanding, knowledge and attitudes which it is hoped children will reach or exceed by the end of the Foundation Stage. Children are guided individually along the stepping stones towards these goals in a caring and sympathetic way, and will grow in confidence and self esteem as they progress.
The Early Years is a happy place where children can explore, develop and use their curiosity and imagination to help them to make sense of their world.
Parents have a key role to play and are encouraged to work closely with the teachers to support and guide their children through this crucial stage in their education.
The Early Years department is to be found in a large, light and most attractive room on the south side of the building. It has areas set aside for story times, for quiet times, for play and for work, and is fortunate to have a separate area for water play and for "messy" activities such as paint or clay. A door leads out into a courtyard where children can spend their time on fine days.
The children are cared for by two qualified teachers who are specialists in Early Years teaching, and by a classroom assistant. With a maximum of 12-14 children, every child is given the support and encouragement it deserves and when the time comes, will move on into Year 1 with enthusiasm and confidence.