Our Curriculum Intent
For many children, Beechdale Nursery is the first experience of school education. With this in mind, our overarching intent is to foster a love of learning through investigating first-hand magic, awe and wonder of our world. We aim to offer them opportunities to explore a wide range of interesting and exciting experiences that ignite curiosity and begin a lifelong love of learning.
Our curriculum coverage is very much based on the children’s interests making each year bespoke and unique to the children attending our Nursery. By following the children’s interests we find children are more engaged and inspired, allowing us to meet children’s learning needs and enabling all children to achieve their full potential. At this age children need a great deal of adult time and attention and our experienced staff give sensitive, appropriate and well timed support.
We offer a play based curriculum as it is through play children make sense of their world and engage in deep level learning. Young children have an enormous capacity for intellectual development, they learn by exploring and investigating, watching and listening, talking and discussing, creating and communicating. It is key for children to ‘have a go’, to be able to learn from their mistakes and try again. Our Nursery School lays firm foundations for future learning and provides a rich variety of learning situations to enable the all-round development of each child. We are flexible and adapt our interactions for individual children’s maturities.
When following the children’s interests it is inevitable that some interests take off and could lead the children’s learning for a longer period where some lose momentum and may last for only a short spell. Every year we deliver some predicted interests and content appropriate to the seasons or time of year; for instance, Autumn or religious festivals and British traditions. Though the majority of content (what we teach) may change each year depending on the children’s interests how we deliver the curriculum is consistent. The areas of effective learning are embedded into everything we do and staff are skilled in teaching and modelling these characteristics to the children.
Our continuous use of assessment ensures that teaching matches the ability of the children and offers real challenge. Children are assessed on entry and records of progress are regularly updated through observation or planned assessment activities. They are also used to group children, according to ability for certain activities and to identify any very able children or children with S.E.N. Information is used regularly to track the children’s progress and evaluate next steps for individual and groups of children.
Our overall values:
These are in conjunction with Consett Infant School to ensure our core values are threaded through all that we do at the very start of their educational journey and is embedded ready for their school life
- Respect for ourselves and the world around us
- Self confidence
- Good manners
All aspects of children’s growth and development are woven together but they can be separated into 7 different educational programmes. These areas are consistent with the Early Learning Goals within the Early Years Foundation Stage for 0 to 5 year olds. The 7 areas are split into 3 prime areas (these are the areas the children should mostly develop first) and 4 specific areas (these will develop as the child grows). Below you can see a breakdown of each area of learning and development.
The Prime Areas:
1. Communication and Language: Involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
2. Physical development: Involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
3. Personal, social and emotional development: Involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves and to others; to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.
The Specific areas:
4. Literacy: Involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems and other written materials) to ignite their interests
5. Mathematics: Involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their social skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and to describe shapes, spaces and measures.
6. Understanding the World: Involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
7. Expressive arts and design: Involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role play and design and technology.
These seven areas are used to plan your child’s learning and activities. We make sure that the activities are suited to your child’s unique needs. This is a bit like a curriculum in Primary and Secondary schools, but its suitable for very young children, and its designed to be really flexible so that we can follow your child’s unique needs and interests.
Children at Nursery will learn by playing and exploring, being active and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside.
Please see the attached document for a very useful Parent Guide to the Early Years Foundation Stage:
Here at Beechdale we look closely each year on year and decide what curriculum goals are the most important to our children here in Consett. We think carefully about the needs of the children and what is important to them to them. This year we have the following curriculum goals…
Please see the links below that show an overview of Early Phonological Awareness at Beechale:
Forest School plays a huge part of our curriculum, the document below shows the importance of Forest School and the progression throughout the school year linked to learning and development:
Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)
At Beechdale Nursery School we believe that inclusive education means providing all pupils with appropriate education and support alongside their peers. The Curriculum is all the planned activities that the school organises in order to promote learning, personal growth and development. Further information can be found in the SEN Information Report.