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Our Day

Click on the headings below to find out more about each part of our day at Sibford School Nursery and Reception.

Arrival and Welcome

The children arrive at school between 8.30-8.45 (please note early morning care is available from 8am). 

Children are welcomed into the classroom, where they can play and settle, ready for a day of learning.  As part of arrival, the children self-register where they can tell us how they are feeling. This allows us to understand how the child is feeling, as well as develop the child’s understanding of their own feelings. For example, it is OK to feel angry, but it is not Ok to hurt someone else. We might explore what we can do if we are feeling angry or sad, such as spending time quietly reading a book. We also encourage the children to think about how other children are feeling. For example, if someone is feeling lonely, could we play with them? 

Once the children are settled and there is a natural break in play and we will start our English session.  This is usually between 9-9.15am. 

Flickr album: EFYS - Welcome | Height: auto | Theme: Default


Phonics and English

At Sibford we teach a short English/phonics session each day. The length of these sessions links closely to the age and ability of the child. 

We have a gentle topic that we explore each half term and will read a selection of stories linked to this topic. We like to try and find a balance between classic books, newer literature, and literature with a good moral message.

In Early Years we put a big emphasis on enjoyment for reading. The children all love storytime and we spend time playing with the stories and having fun with them. We will do one ‘Talk for Writing’ text each term, where learning, playing with, and making up stories are at the centre. We will also spend at least 1 week each half term creating helicopter stories.

Please click on the images below to find out more information on each area. 

Child-Led Learning

While we do have a gentle topic and we do teach short formal sessions, the biggest emphasis in Sibford Early Years is on child-led learning. The small numbers mean that we know our children very well and as a team we will meet regularly to discuss their development and next steps. 

So what is ‘Child-led learning’? To put simply it involves allowing the children to lead the play and for us to develop their learning within that play based on our knowledge of the child. The Early Years is set up so the majority of the resources are readily available and allow for open-ended play. The children are also given access to both the in and outdoor area. We will ‘plan in the moment’, first observing the child(ren) while thinking about that child and their individual needs. We will join in with their play gently introducing something that will deepen and extend their learning.

Flickr album: EYFS - Child Led | Height: auto | Theme: Default



As with English, we also teach a short formal maths session. These sessions are very practical and often linked to real-life problem-solving. For example, we might set up a shop in the role play area and use 1p coins to buy labeled items. We will play games with them which not only build their maths skills but also support things like turn-taking.  

We also bring maths into our daily routines. For example, counting out the number of children to work out how many cups we need to put out at snack time. The majority of our maths learning is done through play and child-led learning. We support the children to pose and solve problems during play and this is where we find the most excitement for maths comes through. 

Flickr album: EYFS - Maths | Height: auto | Theme: Default


Lunch and Play

We all sit together for lunch with an adult on each table in the school dining hall. We model good table manners and enjoy conversation. If the children stay for lunch they will receive a hot lunch and children are encouraged to try new foods but we will not make a child eat anything. We will have a morning and afternoon snack which usually consists of fruit, freshly baked bread rolls with milk or water. During snack time (pre-covid) the children may have a job such as giving out the cups or handing out the fruit. 

During the day the children will have access to the back playground where the mud kitchen, building blocks, etc. are located. For lunchtime play, we give them access to the front playground where they can climb trees, explore the willow tunnel, and have a good run around. 

Flickr album: EYFS - Lunch time and play | Height: auto | Theme: Default


Extracurricular Activities

We are extremely lucky at Sibford that we have access to fantastic facilities and can offer a range of extra curricular opportunities.    At present we offer; 2 PE (Physical Education) sessions; 1 Forest School session; 1 Swimming session; 1 music sessions; and a magical adventure session.    All of these sessions are taught by specialist teachers in their field.  If you are particularly interested in ensuring your child attends one of these sessions then please check which day it takes place by contacting us.

On top of the sessions run by specialists we also  enjoy regular cooking sessions, nature walks, gardening, woodwork and feeding our yearly resident lambs! 

Flickr album: EYFS - Extracurricular | Height: auto | Theme: Default


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