Reception 2023 - 2024

Mrs Cunliffe

Hello, my name is Mrs Cunliffe and I am the Reception Class teacher Billinge, St Aidan's Primary School.

What to expect in Reception

In Reception, your child will follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum. This sets the standards for the learning, development, and care of your child.

The things your child will learn in Reception have been organised into three prime areas of learning:

  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development
  • Personal and Social Development

And four specific areas of learning:

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

What will my child do in Reception?

In the EYFS, play is a very important part of your child’s development and most learning will be introduced through a mixture of carefully planned play and some adult-led focused activities. Don’t be too concerned if your child says that they have been playing all day – it just means that they have been lucky enough to have experienced staff who have made their learning fun and enjoyable! As the Reception year progresses, the learning may start to become more formal in preparation for Year 1 and the National Curriculum.


What kind of assessment is there in Reception?

Throughout your child’s time at school, they will be assessed regularly. This is to check their progress and identify the next steps in their learning. Our school will carry out a baseline assessment to see what your child can do already early in the year. This is nothing to worry about – it is not a test and it is unlikely they will even know it is happening.

At the end of Reception, they will be assessed again. This assessment  is based on what they, and other staff caring for your child, have observed over a period of time. All of the information collected is then used to assess where your child is currently in the seven areas of learning.


How can I help my child in Reception?

1. Read to your child

Life is busy, but even ten minutes of reading with your child each day is one of the best ways you can support their education and help them to become a strong reader. 

While you are reading, make sure to check they are following along. That said, try not to make reading time all about developing vocabulary. At this age, it is vital to make reading a fun activity that your child will look forward to.

You can find more advice on the Oxford Owl Reading in Reception page.

2. Explore phonics

Your child will be taught to read words using phonics. Phonics is an approach to reading that focuses on building words from sounds. Sounds (or phonemes) are represented by letters/groups of letters (or graphemes) – for example, ‘s’, ‘m’, ‘ch’, or ‘igh’.

In Reception, children will start learning some letters and the sounds they make, and will learn to put them together to make simple words. For example, once they know the individual sounds for ‘s’, ‘a’, and ‘t’, they can blend them together to form ‘sat’.

At St Aidan's we follow the Monster Phonics programme. Staff across school have completed Monster phonics training level 1 and 2.  This ensures that there is consistency across the school which is key to its success. Any children identified as not meeting the learning objectives that day are identified and picked up for same day keep up intervention. Regular and efficient monitoring of children’s development in phonics is essential if they are to become competent and confident readers, and subsequently writers. The Monster Phonics programme has a clearly mapped out set of assessments which allows for checking children’s grapheme-phoneme correspondence (GPC), knowledge of High-Frequency Words (HFWs) and Common Exception Words (CEWs) for reading and writing.

All teachers ensure that phonics is embedded throughout daily classroom practice. Focused phonics intervention and in class support is provided for those who still require phonics in Year 3 and KS2.

3. Introduce maths

At this age, your child will be introduced to the idea of numbers and counting. You can help them get to know small numbers with songs and games – take a look at the Fun learning ideas for 4-year-olds for some ideas.

You can also find advice for introducing your child to maths on the Maths in Reception page or the maths section on the Oxford Owl blog.

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