inspiring

Each term learning is planned, linked to a topic or theme which will exceed all requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum.

There are 7 areas of learning identified by the EYFS divided into 3 prime areas and 4 specific areas. The prime areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These 3 areas, the prime areas, are: • communication and language • physical development • personal, social and emotional development

The 4 specific areas, through which the 3 prime areas are strengthened and applied are: • literacy • mathematics • understanding the world • expressive arts and design.

The children in Reception have daily phonics. We operate a system of vertical phonics throughout the School so some of our reception children join the Year One groups for their phonics.

Our Reception Curriculum builds upon what the children have learnt in our Nursery and Pre-Reception. The transition is very smooth and the majority of our children enter Reception working beyond national expectations.

In Reception the class teachers will carry out whole class teaching to introduce and consolidate learning across the curriculum. The teacher will then work with the children in small focused learning groups to ensure all children are making the best possible progress. Alongside the guided activities the children will have access to purposeful learning opportunities which enable the children to demonstrate and develop their learning independently. The guided and independent activities will be engaging, practical and fun. During the school day the children will also have opportunities to choose their own learning from a wide range of activities, such as junk modelling, the writing area, the maths area, the role play area, construction and small world or the Interactive Smartboard. The children have daily access to Outside Learning. Resources are continually changed linked to our topic or theme, to ensure the children are motivated and inspired to learn., The class teachers and teaching assistants continually track and monitor the children’s understanding via observations and to ensure deeper learning ask quality questions, so the children can extend their knowledge and understanding.

Cursive handwriting is introduced to the children in Reception and practised three times per week. The children will use a range of tools to do this, such as paint, sand, marker pens, ribbons, whiteboard pens and of course pencil!

The children in Reception have Forest School three times a term with an outside provider. The children use the natural environment to create, imagine and explore and have lots of fun doing so in the process. Recently they used some tools, such as a saw and a potato peeler to cut and whittle wood! They also enjoy drinking warm hot chocolate at the end of each session!

All children in Reception have a Learning Journey which will include teacher led focused learning work and self-initiated learning activities some of which will be independent. The reception children also have a ‘Ready to Write’ book which clearly demonstrates their excellent progress in writing over the academic year and an Art Sketchbook where they practise skills and techniques building up to a piece of artwork linked to the termly artist focus, such as metal work in the style of Joanne Tinker or black and white in the style of Maurits Escher.

Parents can contribute to this Learning Journey by bringing in ‘Wows’ from home when the children reach small milestones or do something well, this could be riding a bike without stabilisers, doing up all their own buttons, helping tidy their room or simply being kind to a sibling.

Building on the specialist teaching provision the children had in Nursery and Pre-Reception, the children in Reception now have three PE lessons a week both indoor and outdoor, two music lessons and one French lesson. The children also participate in class assemblies in the Autumn and Spring term and perform in our Christmas and Summer productions.

The children in Reception will go on at least one visit a term which will enhance the topic they are studying. They will also go on some local field trips within the local area such as the fire station, the park and the sorting office.

After school clubs become accessible to the Reception children in the Spring term. Recent clubs available have been Rugby, Tiny Tennis, Football and EzeeSport. In the Summer term teacher run clubs also open to Reception children, such as Art club, Messy Play, Handbells and Country Dancing.

As the children move from Reception into Year One a seamless transition is ensured as the children are given opportunities to meet their new teachers and work within the Year One classrooms. A detailed handover of information about each child’s learning happens between the Reception and Year One class teachers. Parents are invited to a transition meeting to find out about curriculum changes as their child moves into Key Stage 1 and the expectations of Year One in the summer before their child begins their Year One journey.

The Year One curriculum is built around termly topics. Where possible the learning in all subject areas will link to the topic. The teachers plan exciting and engaging lessons where the children rapidly make progress in all areas of their learning. Key skills are also taught discreetly, especially in the core subjects English and Maths. Class Teachers continually track and monitor each child’s attainment and progress, and in a class of 18 learning can be personalised so that all children are working on their next steps in their learning. Sometimes children are identified as needing a small boost in specific areas or will need some extension work beyond the daily challenges planned for within the classroom. We have a SENCO who works closely alongside the class teachers and Academic Deputy Headteacher to plan and deliver individual or small group programmes for identified children at no extra cost.

The subjects taught in Year One by the Class Teachers are as follows:

Literacy (Reading, Writing, Handwriting, Speaking and Listening, Spelling and Phonics*)

  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Computing (a class set of iPads available**)
  • History
  • Geography
  • Art and Design
  • Design and Technology
  • Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education
  • Religious Education

* We operate a system of vertical phonics throughout the School so some of our Year One children join Year Two for their phonics and spellings.

** We have a set of iPads which are used across the week as a learning tool to enhance the children’s learning in all areas of the curriculum. Specific apps linked to the topics or key objectives the children are working on are used by the children as part of their lesson or sometimes as an extension challenge. The iPads are also used as a tool for research and a tool for the children to present their work in different ways.

The subjects taught in Year One by Specialist Teachers are as follows:

  • Music
  • Physical Education
  • French
  • Art and Design
  • Computing

In order to enhance the topic they are studying the children in Year One will go on at least one visit a term. Visitors such as a dentist or those bringing animals will also happen over the year to support and enrich the topic the children are learning about.

Once your child is in Year One Mathletics is a home learning tool we provide which is accessed via the internet on a tablet, laptop or computer to help develop your child’s key skills in Mathematics. Certificates can be earned by completing a range of maths activities, which are then presented in school. Class teachers will also select two children each week to earn a Merit certificate for excellent learning. Again these will be presented in a weekly assembly.

Guided Reading groups happen weekly in Year One, as well as 1:1 reading time with the class teacher. The children will have their reading books changed daily and the expectation is that they will read each evening with their parents. The children also have weekly spellings to learn for a test and weekly homework which varies.

In order to aid the children’s development in confidence, articulation, performance and collaboration the children in Year One will participate in lively and informative class assemblies in the Autumn and Spring terms and also perform in our wonderful Christmas and Summer productions.

A wide range of after school clubs is available for the Year One pupils every term. Recent clubs have included Football, Tiny Tennis, Rugby, Art, Sewing, Construction, Mad Science and Country Dancing.

Once the children are in Year One they will have the opportunity to start learning to play the violin. The children then get to perform what they have learnt in a termly Music Concert which parents are invited to watch.

As the children move from Year One into Year Two a seamless transition is ensured as the children are given opportunities to meet their new teachers and work within the Year Two classrooms. A detailed handover of information about each child’s learning happens between the Year One and Year Two class teachers. Parents are invited to a transition meeting to find out about curriculum changes and the expectations of Year Two in the summer before their child begins their Year Two journey.

The Year Two curriculum is built around termly topics. Where possible the learning in all subject areas will link to the topic. The teachers plan exciting and engaging lessons where the children rapidly make progress in all areas of their learning. Key skills are also taught discreetly, especially in the core subjects English and Maths. Class Teachers continually track and monitor each child’s attainment and progress, and in a class of 18 learning can be personalised so that all children are working on their next steps in their learning. Sometimes children are identified as needing a small boost in specific areas or will need some extension work beyond the daily challenges planned for within the classroom. We have a SENCO who works closely alongside the class teachers and Academic Deputy Headteacher to plan and deliver individual or small group programmes for identified children at no extra cost.

The subjects taught in Year Two by the Class Teachers are as follows:

  • Literacy (Reading, Writing, Handwriting, Speaking and Listening, Spelling and Phonics*)
  • Mathematics
  • Science
  • Computing (a class set of iPads available**)
  • History
  • Geography
  • Art and Design
  • Design and Technology
  • Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education
  • Religious Education

* We operate a system of vertical phonics throughout the School so some of our Year One children join Year Two for their phonics and spellings.

** We have a set of iPads which are used across the week as a learning tool to enhance the children’s learning in all areas of the curriculum. Specific apps linked to the topics or key objectives the children are working on are used by the children as part of their lesson or sometimes as an extension challenge. The iPads are also used as a tool for research and a tool for the children to present their work in different ways.

The subjects taught in Year Two by Specialist Teachers are as follows:

  • Music
  • Physical Education
  • French
  • Art and Design
  • Computing
  • Philosophy

One of our unique and exceptional features is that our Year Two children are awarded special roles and responsibilities, such as Head Boy, Deputy Head Boy, Head Girl, Deputy Head Girl, House Captains, Music Captains, Head of School Council and Blue Bench Monitors. These roles are intended to foster maturity and independence and a caring awareness of others, which are the hallmarks of a St Christopher’s child.

In order to enhance the topic they are studying the children in Year Two will go on at least one visit a term. A highlight of Year Two’s year is their overnight stay at the Juniper Hall Field Study Centre near Dorking. This gives them the opportunity to consolidate their knowledge of minibeasts with practical investigations and fun. At the same time hot chocolate around a real campfire and the excitement of staying overnight with all your class friends is the icing on the cake during a wonderful final year at St Christopher’s.

Mathletics is a home learning tool we provide which is accessed via the internet on a tablet, laptop or computer to help develop your child’s key skills in Mathematics. Certificates can be earned by completing a range of maths activities, which are then presented in school. Class teachers will also select two children each week to earn a Merit certificate for excellent learning. Again these will be presented in a weekly assembly.

Guided Reading groups happen weekly in YearTwo, as well as 1:1 reading time with the class teacher. The children will have their reading books changed daily and the expectation is that they will read each evening with their parents. The children also have weekly spellings to learn for a test and weekly homework which varies.

In order to aid the children’s development in confidence, articulation, performance and collaboration the children in Year Two will participate in lively and informative class assemblies in the Autumn and Spring terms and will also take on lead roles in our wonderful Christmas and Summer productions.

All children in Year Two have the opportunity to learn an instrument. We offer lessons in recorders and the violin. The children then get to perform what they have learnt in a termly Music Concert which parents are invited to watch. Children who learn instruments such as piano outside of school are also invited to showcase their talents during this time.

A wide range of after school clubs is available for the Year Two pupils every term. Recent clubs have included Football, Tiny Tennis, Rugby, Art, Sewing, Construction, Netball, iPads, Challenge to Succeed, Orchestra and Yoga.