Cheriton Primary School

Cheriton Primary School
Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School Life at Cheriton Primary School

The school is vibrant, cultural heritages are valued and celebrated. Outstanding engagement with parents. Pupils lives are enriched because you make the most of the diverse cultral and social mix. All staff are proud to work here and enjoy being part of the school. Ofsted

Early Years

Early Years at Cheriton

Through a positive caring environment, we provide the opportunity for every child to reach their full potential. We follow the schools values which are learning, caring and sharing and ensure all children are ready for their next steps in their school journey.

The term Early Years is used to describe children within the Reception Classes.

“Every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their potential. Children develop quickly in the early years and a child’s experiences between birth and age five have a major impact on their future life chances. A secure, safe and happy childhood is important in its own right. Good parenting and high quality early learning together provide the foundation children need to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up.”

Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage, Department for Education, March 2012

The Reception year must provide every child with a feeling of security, being valued and the confidence to explore new learning.

The EYFS is based on four overarching principles:

  • Every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, and confident.
  • Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
  • Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and/or carers; and
  • Children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates.

Aims and Principles

  • Foundation Stage teachers and teaching assistants should ensure that all children feel part of the school community, secure and valued.
  • To provide a relevant curriculum with tasks that take into account the children’s interests and fascinations and are both practical and purposeful.
  • To provide quality opportunities for children to engage in activities planned by adults and those that children plan or self-initiate. Teachers must plan a challenging and enjoyable experience in all areas of learning and development.
  • Practitioners acknowledge the holistic nature of young children’s learning and natural links will be made between different areas of the curriculum, with the emphasis on learning through play and the importance of developing the prime areas of the Foundation Stage Curriculum.
  • Practitioners must create a learning environment that develops children’s imagination and encourages children to explore and express their ideas and feelings.

Planning and organising the curriculum

There are seven areas of learning and development that must provide a framework for planning, teaching and assessing in early years settings. All areas of learning and development are inter-connected.

The three prime areas are:

  • Communication and Language – children will be given a range of opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their ability to express themselves; to speak and listen in a range of situations.
    • Physical Development – children will be provided with lots of opportunities to be active; to develop their co-ordination, control and movement. Children will be able to explore the vast environment that is Cheriton Primary including the adventure trail and forest school. Children will be taught the importance of physical activity and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development – help children develop a positive sense of themselves and others; forming positive relationship; develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; understand appropriate behaviour in a range of different social scenarios; and have confidence in their own abilities and to make independent choices.
    There are also four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied:
  • Literacy – children will be taught to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children will be taught Phonics from the Letters and Sounds Document, this will enable them to make good process with both their reading and writing. Children will be given access to a wide range of reading materials to ignite their interest.
  • Mathematics – children will be provided with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating addition and subtraction problems using single digit numbers; and to describe shapes, spaces and measures.
  • Understanding the World – Children will make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment. Children will be able take advantage of our richly diverse school community and will be able to explore what makes people unique and also what brings us together.
  • Expressive Arts and Design – Children will explore and play with a range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and DT.


Classroom Organisation and Resources

The organisation of the Foundation Stage classrooms reflects the importance that is placed on children learning through play and first-hand experience, developing independence and having opportunities to initiate their own activities.

The Reception class provides the following areas:

  • Malleable area
  • Role play area
  • Construction and Small World area
  • Sand and water
  • Book area with a range of fiction and non-fiction books
  • Writing table with a range of writing resources
  • Creative area including junk modelling, painting, college and other creative media.
  • Computers and printer
  • Interactive whiteboard
  • Musical instruments
  • Maths games and equipment
  • Outside classroom – large scale construction materials, gross motor area, mathematical games and ball games, mud kitchen, water area, bike area and a stage for music and dramatic play. As well as gardening area subject to the season.
  • The Reception class also has a set of boots and waterproof clothing in order to make full use of the outside classroom, school field and the on-site Forest Schools area.


We have close links with lots of the Nursery in the local area as well as St Martins Nursery which is situated on our school grounds and Shorncliffe Nursery which is situated at the centre of the Army housing near the school.


In June, a meeting is held by the Headteacher and Foundation Stage teachers to introduce parents/carers to the school, procedures and curriculum. Parents/carers are given a school prospectus which outlines the curriculum and school routines, along with a document pack to be completed and returned to school.

When school starts in September, all parents/carers have the option to either haver a home visit or a school visit, this gives the new child and their family an opportunity to meet with their new teacher on a one to one basis. The children will then have a week of half days in school followed by children starting full time the next week; this ensures children have time to settle into school life gradually. Foundation Stage children are introduced to the life of the wider school gently as they are ready.

Involving Parents

Parents/carers are the child’s first and most enduring educators. When parents/carers and teachers work together, the results have a positive impact on the child’s development. A successful partnership needs to be a two-way flow of information, knowledge and expertise. We aim to develop this by:

  • Outlining how the EYFS is being delivered to Parents/carers during the new parents meeting in June, to enable them to understand the value of supporting their child’s learning at home and how they can access more information.
  • Operating an “open door” policy, whereby parents/carers can come and discuss concerns and developments in an informal manner, and also to view children’s work.
  • Sharing progress at school through annotated photographs and observations in ‘Learning Journeys’ which are always available for parents to look at. Parents also have a ‘Tapestry account’ for their child which will enable a two way sharing process between parents and teachers.
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  • In the Autumn term, there will be an evening meeting for parents to further explain the curriculum, with a particular focus on phonics, reading and early maths skills, to share ideas on how parents can be involved.
  • Discussing individual next steps and progress with parents/carers at parents’ evening in Autumn and Spring terms.
  • Any concerns over special needs will be discussed with parents and the Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) for the school.
  • The first books that children bring home to share with parents/carers will be picture books and then books with simple repetitive text and words.
  • During the year, each child will take home independent reading books that have been shared at school.