We were delighted to be deemed as Outstanding in all areas by the ISI Inspectorate in our May 2016 Inspection report.
Children may start Nursery in the term before they turn three and most will then spend a full year in Kindergarten before transitioning to our Reception class. Staff work alongside parents to ensure a smooth transition and we work hard to ensure that every child is confident and secure within our environment. Growth and development stems from firm roots of happiness and fun and this is the basis of everything that we do.
Learning happens through a balanced provision of child-initiated free choice play and adult led activities. Our well-qualified and experienced staff, aim to create a rich and stimulating environment in which every child can flourish. The activities and learning opportunities are carefully matched to each child’s needs, so that every child can make progress.
The planning of activities is topic based and so children are able to develop their understanding in a range of different ways. For example, during the topic of Transport, you might see a ‘scooter racetrack’ set out in the playground, the role play area transformed into an airport (complete with passports and suitcases to pack), the sand tray filled with construction vehicles and numeracy activities might involve ordering numbered train carriages.
It is our belief that the greatest learning happens outside of the classroom and we use every opportunity to take the children outside and into our wonderful grounds. Nursery and Kindergarten have access to their own, secure all-weather playground where they can run, climb, and scoot around. There are also quiet, creative areas for those who want to draw, weave or look at a book. The children go on seasonal walks, to the woods or down to the lake and they are often found exploring in our wonderful Woodland School site.
Even at this young age, children benefit from the facilities and specialist teachers of the Prep School. Children in Nursery and Kindergarten can attend ballet classes and have singing and music sessions with a specialist teacher too. Our youngest children also develop confidence through performance, taking part in both our Christmas and Easter seasonal performances.
When your child is so little, perhaps more than any other time, it is vital that you feel confident they will get the very best of care and education and that is why we will always maintain the very highest levels of staff:child ratios and staff qualifications. Your child is as important to us as they are to you.
The Reception curriculum underpins all future learning by supporting, fostering, promoting and developing children’s skills, attitudes and understanding.
The Reception classroom at Moor Park follows the principles laid out in the EYFS and is very much still a play based environment. We believe that even though we are increasing the children’s capacity to listen and focus on learning tasks, at this age, they still learn most effectively through play. In large, bright and airy classrooms the children have access to construction, role-play and creative areas such as paints and play dough. The aim is to create learning opportunities from the children’s play and so we design mathematical challenges for the children to solve and encourage writing to be an integrated element in their play. During the topic of ‘A Long Time Ago’ the role play area became a castle and children were encouraged to design and write a menu for their feast.
Time is dedicated each morning to developing the children’s numeracy and literacy skills. Lessons are fun, lively and practical, ensuring that all children make progress, at their own level and at their own pace. It is truly amazing to see the progress that children make at this stage and the most important thing is that they develop the confidence to have a go; to use their phonic knowledge to sound out words, to write plausible and phonetically accurate sentences, to have a bank of strategies to solve a number puzzle. Many children will be very confident readers and writers by the time they leave Reception.
Reception children eat lunch and share a playground with the children in Year 1 and 2. The playground has a climbing frame and swings, a playhouse and plenty of toys for the children to enjoy. The older children provide wonderful role models and the children will often be found playing together in mixed aged groups.
The Reception curriculum is varied and designed to give pupils a first glimpse at a range of new and exciting experiences. The children begin French lessons, have a weekly session in our C&IT lab, visit our DT room to do woodwork (using saws and drills!), create ceramics in the art room and music is also taught by a specialist teacher. In the Summer Term, they can begin tuition in tennis and taekwondo if they wish.
Wellies are the order of the day for walks around the school grounds and for sessions in our wonderful and rather magical Woodland School site. Children are able to collect water from the stream for their mud pies, play hide and seek in the bamboo dens and make hibernation hotels from sticks and twigs for the mini-beasts in the woods. They observe the seasons changing around them and the children are truly lucky to be able to learn in such a beautiful environment.
Children move through to Reception in the September following their fourth birthday and attend five days a week.