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Coppice Valley Primary School

Respect, Pride, Choice

Early Years

Our Beliefs and Practice in Reception

Here at Coppice Valley, we are passionate about ensuring our Reception children receive the best possible start to their education.  Our staff consider the unique needs of the child, planning provision for them to make the best possible progress through the Early Years curriculum, in readiness for Year 1.

Our youngest pupils are very much part of the whole school- they learn about our rules, ethos and culture from the very start. We are proud of the high expectations and standards of behaviour our Reception pupils demonstrate, from being taught about such important matters as sharing, cooperation, respect and friendships

Working with parents is vital to getting a full understanding of each and every child. We organise termly “Stay and Play” sessions for parents to come to in school, have regular information meetings e.g. about phonics and reading, ask parents to contribute to their child’s learning journey in addition to progress meetings.

To help facilitate good communication with parents, and to assist in making regular and accurate judgements about children’s progress, we use Tapestry, and online learning journey that parents can access with a secure code for their own child. This allows parents to actively contribute to their child’s learning journey whenever they want.


The Curriculum in EYFS is the DfES Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage, whose guiding principles are:

    • every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured;

    • 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. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.

The EYFS Curriculum is composed of seven areas of learning and development made of:

The prime areas, which are:

• communication and language;

• physical development; and

• personal, social and emotional development.

The specific areas are:

• literacy;


• expressive arts and design;

  understanding the world;


Each area of learning and development is implemented through well planned, purposeful play and through a mix of adult-led and child-initiated activity. Play is essential for children’s development, building their confidence as they learn to explore, to think about problems, and relate to others. Children learn by leading their own play, and by taking part in play which is guided by adults. There are ongoing judgements made by the class teacher and teaching assistant about the balance between activities led by children, and activities led or guided by adults. Adults respond to each child’s emerging needs and interests, guiding their development through warm, positive interaction. As the children grow older, and as their development allows, the balance will gradually shift towards more activities led by adults, to help the children prepare for more formal learning in Year 1

In planning and guiding children’s activities, adults reflect on the different ways that children learn and reflect these in their practice. Three characteristics of effective teaching and learning are:

  • playing and exploring - children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’;
  • active learning - children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements; and
  • creating and thinking critically - children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.

Please see our Reception Oak Class Long Term Plan on the Curriculum Page for more details