Nursery and Reception

(Early Years Foundation Stage)

The standards achieved in the EYFS are excellent. ISI report 2015 ~ to view a full copy of the ISI report click here.

Our Nursery and Reception classes for three to five year olds provide a perfect entry into school life. Children follow the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum which involves play and activities designed to develop key skills and talents. Young children learn best by direct experience and so we ensure that most of the learning is hands-on. Objects and materials that aid development are made fully accessible, and role-play and sensory areas are changed frequently to provide variety and stimulus. Our carefully planned curriculum takes into account the interests and pre-occupations of each child and they are given time to contemplate, explore and consider so that their understanding becomes secure. Outdoor learning is an integral part of the Nursery and Reception programme at Sibford School and supports all aspects of the curriculum: for example, counting is learnt outdoors using natural resources such as leaves and acorns. We also undertake regular ‘Forest School’ sessions where children participate in engaging, motivating and achievable activities in a safe woodland environment. Reception and Nursery children eat their lunch in the Dining Room alongside their teachers. We believe lunchtime is an important part of the day which can aid the social development of young children. Lunch is therefore included for all pupils (including those joining us for half days).


Nursery Class: To enter Nursery, children must have reached the age of three by 31st August prior to the start of the academic year in which they will become four. Children starting in September at the age of three will initially be offered Morning or Afternoon sessions, but they can increase their hours as the year goes on. Nursery children are given plenty of opportunities to develop their vocabulary and explore sounds. They listen to a story at least twice a day. Maths is all about counting and learning the number names. (Please note, it is expected that all nursery children are able to use the toilet independently before joining the school.)

Reception Class: Children move from Nursery to Reception in the September following their fourth birthday. Children can also join Sibford School coming straight into Reception Class. Most children attend Reception on a full time basis although, legally, they do not need to be in full time education until the term after their 5th birthday. In Reception Class, children start learning to identify and write letters and sounds. Each child is heard or read with every day. Initially maths is very much play-based however, as the academic year progresses, the children begin to learn calculation skills as well as how to write numbers and mathematical symbols. We acknowledge that children develop at different rates and this is taken into account when planning the curriculum.

Rejoice in the presence of children and young people … and recognise the gifts they bring.

Quaker Advice & Queries 19