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Foundation Stage

  The Foundation Stage is the period of education from birth to 5 years.  In our Foundation Stage Unit we have a Nursery Class and a Reception Class.


In the Early Years Foundation Stage we recognise that children develop in individual ways, and at varying rates.  We acknowledge and value each child as an individual and respond genuinely in a positive way to each child's achievements with praise and encouragement, developing a positive attitude to learning.




We believe that all our children matter.   We give our children every opportunity to achieve their potential.


We take the time to get to know your children, their personalities and their interests, so that we promote their self-esteem and well-being in a friendly, caring environment.



 As a team we believe that parents are their child’s first and foremost educators.   We value the contribution you make, the role that parents play and your continuing role in educating your children.


We aim to build upon your foundations.  We provide a positive learning environment, both indoors and out, which is welcoming and inviting, yet challenging.




We value the diversity of all children and their families at Riverside.



We celebrate what your child can do, and provide experiences and opportunities to develop children’s learning, creativity, imagination and enthusiasm.


Allowing your child to ‘learn’, ‘explore’ and ‘take risks’ securely and safely in a stimulating, calm environment.




What is the Foundation Stage Curriculum?


We have a curriculum that is child-centred and that is based upon first hand experiences and themes.  We encourage active learning, this occurs when children are motivated and interested.  Children need to have some independence and control over their learning.  Guided and child initiated activities are set up and planned that cover all areas of the EYFS curriculum and allow children to develop their next steps in learning.


The EYFS is made up of seven areas:


Personal, Social and Emotional Development


Physical Development


Communication and Language






Understanding the World


Expressive Arts and Design



Topics that the children explore throughout the year are linked to their interests and cover all seven areas of learning.  The Foundation Stage Curriculum emphasises the importance of well planned play as a key element in which young children learn with enjoyment and challenge.


We follow the 'Letters and Sounds' phonics scheme to teach a daily phonics lesson which starts from phase 1 in Nursery.


 In Nursery the children are encouraged to look at books, hear stories and take home reading books from our library each week.   Once the children are in Reception they take home a book from our Oxford Reading Tree scheme books, to encourage them to use their phonic sounds and recognise tricky words.


Observations of children's learning and samples of work are collected and put into the children's Riverside Journeys which they enjoy sharing in the class and adding to themselves.  Parents have regular opportunities to view these.


How you can help at home


Make time to talk with your child about what they are doing, past experiences, their thoughts and ideas, what you are going to do, etc.  Make sure that you listen to what your child has to say to you.


Reading stories/books, singing songs/nursery rhymes, doing action and counting songs with your child will help develop their early reading skills.  A bedtime story is an excellent way to foster a love of books.


Include your child in household jobs for real life math challenges.  Sorting washing, laying the table, tidying up, cooking and shopping all give lots of opportunities for sorting, counting, making comparisons, measuring, handling money etc.



Help to develop fine motor skills by colouring, drawing, cutting and sticking, to help develop their writing skills.


Play ‘spotting’ games, where you can look for different shapes, street names, colours etc.


Share any 'WOW' moments your child has at home.  These are displayed in our classrooms.


Remember you are your child’s first and foremost educator.  Help them to achieve and have an amazing life full of good experiences.












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