‘Play, while central, is not the only way in which children develop and learn in the early years. Children
also have opportunities to learn through first-hand experiences of all sorts, alongside being shown how to do things, having conversations, and taking part in activities which are planned by adults to introduce or practice particular skills.’ - Birth to Five 2021
Welcome to Reception page
Welcome to our school
We would like to give you a huge, warm welcome to St Thomas CE (VC) Primary School. We are delighted that your child will be a part of the St Thomas family. Your child will be in the Early Years Foundation Stage. We have two Reception classes which are led by Miss James; who is our experienced and knowledgeable Early Years Lead. Class One children are taught by Miss Corbishley and Class Two children are taught by Miss James. Miss Corbishley has been working at the school for three years and she has previously taught in Year 1. The classes are also supported by a number of Early Years Teaching Assistants.
Starting School - Important Information
We have provided lots of information below to help prepare you and your child for starting school, you will find lots of useful hints and tips of how to support your child's transition as we know that this can be an anxious time for both you and your child.
All about Reception
We work tirelessly to create an innovative, fun, inspiring and creative learning environment both indoors and outdoors that enables all children to learn, play, explore, have a go, make choices, develop critical thinking and solve problems. Each half term we have a new topic and a selection of fantastic stories and books that hook your child into the topic! We truly value the importance of books and we re-read these stories to your child to develop their vocabulary and understanding. Our topics are called; Me and My Community, Once Upon a Time, Starry Night, Dangerous Dinosaurs, Sunshine & Sunflowers and Big Wide World! You can find more information about our curriculum here
Our Classroom Environment
We pride ourselves at St Thomas Primary School that we make our classrooms creative and fun to engage young learners. We follow topics each half term that will engage and excite your child. The children are taught through a balance of child initiated and adult led activities. They are taught Phonics, Literacy and Maths on a daily basis. We also ensure that children are read to at least twice a day and we share high quality picture books with them. Your child is able to explore indoors and outdoors, they have access to the outdoor classroom on a daily basis where they can explore and learn about the world around them - all they need is a pair of wellington boots and a waterproof coat!
Each half term the children learn about a new topic and the classroom is then enhanced to reflect this learning. For example, the children learn about ‘Dangerous Dinosaurs’ in the Spring term. and we add exciting and stimulating resources to support their learning, these include a digging area where children can learn to be a paleontologist and look for fossils. The book corner is also enhanced with leaves and camouflaged material and a selection of dinosaur soft toys.
Your child will begin their school day in their own class space; this then allows the teacher to deliver daily Maths, Phonics and Literacy lessons. After this, we allow the children to move between both classrooms which have been organised to enable children to access the different areas of provision such as sand play, water play, Maths area, Art and Junk modelling and a Home Corner. Children are encouraged to develop their independence as they move freely between these spaces. The children are supported by adults who interact with the children, listening and responding and modelling language and vocabulary.
We are currently working hard to develop our outdoor learning space. Outdoors we have a vast green space where children can run freely and develop their gross motor skills. There are hills for children to navigate and develop balance and coordination. They are able to learn about the seasons by observing the natural changes that take place outdoors. We encourage children to develop a love for reading and enjoy reading underneath the trees. The children are able to talk about the world around them and observe natural changes, they also like to look for bugs and insects hidden under the logs. We also have a wooden tree house and a super mud kitchen!! The children enjoy developing their mathematical understanding outdoors e.g., number hunts, counting natural objects and measuring objects using ribbons! Have a look at the photographs below and talk to your child about what areas of provision they may want to explore when they start school.
PARENTS AS PARTNERS
We firmly believe that for children to get the best education we need a fantastic partnership between home and school. We operate an open-door policy and welcome any questions, feedback and opportunities to support you and your child.
HOW DO WE INVOLVE FAMILIES?
At St Thomas Primary School, we welcome your involvement in your child's education. We invite you to attend welcome meetings and parent workshops.
Mystery Parent Reader
Each week we welcome parents and family members to come along and share their child's favourite story from home with the class. Remember to keep this a secret from your child, it's lovely to see their face when they realise it's their special person!
We track your child's learning journey using an online system called Tapestry. You will be able to see all of the wonderful activities and learning that takes place in school. We also use Tapestry to upload home learning ideas to consolidate learning from the week. We welcome your home contributions all you have to do is log on, click the add observation and save it for us! This is saved under the 'Activities' section. Throughout the rest of school we use an online system called SeeSaw.
We use a messaging service called Teachers2Parents to send messages to parents by text and email.
Each half term we send out a newsletter. This has important information about our learning, up and coming dates and lots of exciting ways that you can help at home.