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Foundation Stage

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Welcome to Reception!


Welcome to Collingham School!smiley


We hope you have all had an amazing Summersmiley  Mrs Letheren and I cannot wait to meet you all at the home visits this week. Home visits provide us with a chance to get to know the children on a one to one basis in their home environment. They are also a chance for parents to ask us any questions they might have about starting school. The Early Years Foundation stage views parents as partners in their children's learning and so this a fantastic opportunity for you to tell us a bit about your child's learning and development. Mrs Swift will do the home visits on Tuesday and Wednesday and will be accompanied by Mrs Wilson in the mornings and Mrs Shaw Tuesday afternoon and Mrs Naylor on Wednesday afternoon. Mrs Letheren will carry out the home visits on Thursday and Friday and will be accompanied by Mrs Wilson in the mornings and Mrs Naylor in the afternoon.


Children will start school on Monday, Tuesday or Thursday of the week commencing the 11th September depending on their date of birth. The children will start school in small groups to enable us to observe your children closely and get to know them better. On your child's first morning at school they will start at 9.15 am and you may accompany them into the classroom, after this they will start school at the normal time of 8.50 am and will line up when the bell goes and come into school independently. For this week the children will do half days at school and will need to be picked up at 1pm after their lunch. The children will start school for full days on Monday 18th September. We will bring a letter with us to the home visits with all the information you need for starting school along with what day your child starts. We are aware there is lots of information to take in so please just ask if you have any questions!


 Please talk to your children about the process of coming into school and what they need to do in order to help make the transition as smooth as possible. Also please find attached at the bottom of this web page a list about how to help prepare your child for school.


The first few weeks at school!

During your child's first week at school when they are attending for half days we will be carrying out lots of  observations on the children whilst they play, we will also be teaching the children about the routines of the school day, how to organise and sort out their belongings independently, tidying up our learning resources, lining up at play times and how to take it in turns to speak during whole class discussions.


During the second week at school we will be carrying out baseline assessments on the children to help provide us with a picture of their learning and development.  We will also be teaching the children about the schools RESPECT code. Their learning will be based on the RESPECT code and also the schools Personal Development goals. The Early Years Foundation Stage also has ' Characteristics of Effective learning' which are central to all learning in Reception. These Characteristics of Effective learning will be reported on at the end of the year. As a school we believe that these characteristics underpin all learning and it is extremely important that children learn and develop these skills to create a life long love of learning. At the bottom of this page are links to all three documents, please take the time during your child's first few weeks at school to familiarise yourself with the language we use as a school when talking about the skills we need to learn as the children will be using lots of words from these documents in everyday life!


During the third week at school the children will begin their more formal Literacy and Mathematics learning and we will introduce our new topic to the children!


 Please read the sections of the website below for details about what we are learning about in the different subject areas this half term. We hope you enjoy reading our class page, where topic information will be updated ready for the start of each half-term and latest news will be updated fortnightly on a Thursday. As always, there will be lots of photographs uploaded after all the exciting activities and events we get up to!


The Reception staff team consists of Mrs Swift, who is the Early Years Leader and class teacher and a member of the Senior Leadership team, Mrs Letheren, class teacher and Mrs Wilson, Mrs Naylor, Mrs Shaw and Mrs Meek who are teaching assistants. Mrs Swift will be teaching Monday mornings, all day Tuesday, Wednesday mornings and alternate Wednesday afternoons. Mrs Meek will be teaching on a Monday afternoon when Mrs Swift is having her leadership time and planning exciting things for the whole school! Mrs Letheren will be teaching alternate Wednesday afternoons and all day Thursday and Friday. Mrs Wilson will be our teaching assistant every morning. On Mondays and Tuesdays Mrs Shaw will be our teaching assistant in the afternoons and Wednesday, Thursday, Friday Mrs Naylor will be our teaching assistant.


Our PE day this half term will be Friday. During this lesson the children will focus on particular skills and aspects of PE. However the children have access to physical development opportunities every day both inside and outside of the classroom. Physical development in the EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) is a prime area of development.  Part of this includes developing children’s knowledge and skills in taking responsibility for their own health and self –care. The EYFS states that ‘children manage their own basic hygiene and personal needs successfully including dressing and going to the toilet independently’. For this reason, Reception children should bring their PE kit to school in a draw string bag at the start of every term. Their PE kit will stay in school and children will practice getting dressed and undressed independently at the start of every formal PE lesson. Reception children will take their PE kit home at the end of every half term to be washed.


Book changing days will be Mondays and Thursdays, please note that books will only be changed if your child's reading record has been signed. Books will not be sent home with the children as soon as they start Reception. Children will be given a reading book to take home when Mrs Swift and Mrs Letheren have assessed them as being ready.


Show and Tell will be on a Monday. This is an opportunity for children to talk to, and/or show the whole class about something important to them. This may be something they did or created at the weekend or out of school or it could be something from home that is special to them. Show and Tell helps us to get to know the children and their achievements and interests outside of school, it is also a fantastic opportunity to practice their speaking, listening and questioning skills. Children do not have to participate every week, this is an optional activity.


Tommy the Travelling bear will be sent home with a different child every Friday and should be returned preferably by Monday but no later than Wednesday of the following week. Tommy will be part of your family for the weekend, the class love hearing about what he has been up to! Tommy activities can be recorded in his book with writing and/or pictures, please see Tommy's book for more details. 



Upcoming events


Monday 4th September- Training day

Tuesday 5th- Friday 8th September- Home visits

Monday 11th- Friday 15th September- Children in school for half days

Monday 18th September- Children start school full time

Wednesday 4th October- RWI parents meeting at 6pm

Wednesday 18th October- Maths afternoon 1pm onwards (more details to follow)

Thursday 19th October- Break up for half term.

Friday 20th October- Training Day

Wednesday 29th November- Superhero day



Latest News


This is the place to check in each fortnight to find out about all the exciting things we have been up to!


RESPECT Code- Newsletter update 2

Reception have made the transition to school amazingly! Mrs Swift and Mrs Letheren are so proud of them. It has been a joy to observe the children as they explore the resources in the classroom. The children are playing with such focus and high levels of engagement.
We have been learning all about the RESPECT code and the values within it. The children have all been using Mrs Swifts favourite word- perseverance! We have also started our RWI and Mathematics lessons and the children have all been very positive and enthusiastic about their learning! Mrs Letheren would like some old mobile phones with key pads to enhance our technology area in the classroom, if you have any that you can bring in that would be great.


A fantastic start to the new school year!- Newletter update 1

Thank you for welcoming us into your houses last week! We have really enjoyed the opportunity to get to know all the parents and children in Reception. This week the children have been coming to school for half days, all the staff in Reception cannot believe how amazingly the children are settling in. They have listened really well and as a result are learning all the new routines in the school day quickly. We have been focusing on organising and putting on our belongings independently, tidying up our learning resources, lining up at playtimes and how to take it in turns to speak when we are having whole class discussions. One thing that has really stood out to us both is that all the children have all been really engaged when playing and exploring in the classroom both inside and out. Next week we will be learning about the schools RESPECT code and what the words in the RESPECT code mean and how they will help us to become superhero learners! We would like to thank all the parents in Reception for their support in preparing the children for school as the children have been trying really hard to be independent and have already been showing lots of elements of the RESPECT code. Mrs Swift and Mrs Letheren.

Homework expectations


Learning logs in Reception will not be sent home every week they will be set when appropriate to the children's learning and often link with what the children have or will be learning at school. Inside the learning log there will be a learning challenge set by the teachers, tasks and expected timeframes for the return of completed learning logs will vary depending on the challenge set. Time frames and expectations will always be clearly communicated to both children and parents at the setting of each task.  


Learning Logs are a unique personalised home / school learning resource for children. In the Learning Logs, children record their responses to learning challenges set by their teachers. Each log will become a unique record of a child's thinking and learning. The children can demonstrate their learning in a way that suits them. Learning logs are an excellent opportunity for parents to contribute to their children's learning journey and profile in Reception and have fun learning together! We really value any annotations or notes about how your child has been carrying out the learning log at home.


Curriculum this half term




The curriculum in Reception is holistic and not separated into subjects. The curriculum is set out into areas of learning. We do not explicitly make links to these area when talking to the children about topic learning. However when teachers plan topic learning is planned using these areas. As parents we realise that you might like to know which areas of the curriculum the topic learning links to and so we have provided the curriculum links for you. Please note that all learning that takes place in Reception covers all the areas of learning however the links provided are the ones that we are particularly focusing on that week. Literacy (reading and writing) and Mathematics forms part of all the topic learning that we do. In order to prepare the children for Year One we will where appropriate link learning to the national curriculum subjects such as History, Science, Geography.


Below is a key for the areas of learning;


PSED= Personal, Social and Emotional development

C&L= Communication and Language

PD= Physical development

UW= Understanding the world

EAD= Expressive Arts and Design.


Please see the web links at the bottom of the page for more detailed information on the Early Year curriculum and areas of learning.


Our topic for this half term is..............We are superheroes!

We will be learning about what makes us superhero learners- this topic focuses heavily on being ready for school and the RESPECT code and PSED area of learning



During our topic this half term we will be answering the following questions; 

  •  What rules and routines do we need to become superhero learners? This week we learn about the values in the RESPECT code through different stories.
  • What makes us superheroes? This week we look at our friends and families and what makes us special. We draw pictures of someone we love and we make our faces out of clay.


This half term we will also be thinking about Harvest and preparing for our Harvest festival! We will be thinking about what Harvest means and why we celebrate harvest at Collingham school.


During the last week of term Reception will also be learning about our new RE curriculum




We follow the Read Write Inc (RWI) scheme of work in our Literacy lessons. We use this scheme to teach the children to read and write. The children will start by learning their 'Set 1' sounds. We will focus on a different sound each day. We will practice saying, reading and writing that sound. The children will recap every sound they have learnt each day so that learning can be consolidated. Sounds that the children have been learning that week will be sent home at the end of the week so that you can support your child practicing at home.


When the children can say, read and write sounds confidently then they will start to take part in 'word time' activities. This is where the children start to read ( by blending the sounds together) and write ( by segmenting the sounds) three letter cvc (consonant, vowel, consonant) words made up of the sounds they already know. 

In Reception the children will have opportunities to read and write in all areas of the classroom and areas of the classroom will be enhanced at different times to encourage the children to read and write words and sentences using the skills they have learnt during RWI lessons. 


The children will take a reading book home when Mrs Swift and Mrs Letheren have assessed them as being ready. The reading books your child brings home are different to those we use in class for the teaching of specific reading skills. The home reading books are designed for your child to ‘show off’ to you about how well they are doing with their reading. They should never present too much of a challenge or become a chore; by using these Oxford Reading Tree books (based on the adventures of Biff, Chip and Kipper) we hope to foster a love of reading and an enjoyment of books that your child will carry with them into adulthood. Remember to read the books more than once and ask plenty of questions. Understanding the story is just as important as being able to read the words so look at the pictures and ask questions about how the characters might be feeling, predict what might happen next or ask why a certain character did what they did. We do not hear your child read every reading book that we send home however we assess your child in their reading all the time as part of their RWI lessons and will move them up to the next stage when they are ready.



Mrs Swift will be focusing on the number strand of Mathematics including addition and subtraction. This half term the children will be learning;

  • To count up to 20 objects accurately using 1:1 correspondence
  • To recognise numbers 0-10 and when ready 0-20
  • To write and form correctly, numbers 0-10 and when ready 0-20
  • To say the number that is one more than a number from 0-20


Mrs Letheren will be focusing on the shape, space and measure strand of Mathematics. This half term the children will be learning:

  • To recognise and continue a repeating pattern using actions, objects, colours, images or shapes

  • To recognise and name ‘flat’ 2D shapes, and use mathematical terms to describe them such as side, corner and curved

  • To understand and use positional language such as under, over, behind and in front of



In our Technology Area, the children will have access to simple programs to practise using a mouse pad on the Netbooks. We will also use these programs in the Computer Suite using a computer and mouse. They will begin to use a CD player to listen to stories. The children will also take photographs of each other using digital cameras and have fun using and making a variety of real and pretend phones and numbers.



Exciting new RE curriculum. Watch this space!



Our PE sessions will focus on using parachute games in order to teach the children the key skills of control, co-ordination, co-operation and gaining a sense of space. Each session will include a warm up activity where we will discuss how our bodies change and the importance of physical exercise. We will of course be mastering the art of getting changed independently and not losing any of our uniform!



We will be giving the children their first taste of linguistics! It is widely reported that young children pick up languages easily. The children will take part in a whole class French session every week. We will start by focussing on greetings using fun actions, rhymes and games.


British Values


This half term we will be learning about what British Values are and what they mean. We will be doing this through our topic and through reading different stories


.British Values include;

  • democracy
  • the rule of law
  • individual liberty
  • mutual respect for and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs and for those without faith.




Preparing for school

Wow stars

Learning log homework statement


Personal Development Goals

Reception Curriculum including Characteristics of Effective Learning

Reception Maths Calculation Methods