Years 1 & 2
The principle themes in the Infant Department are:
- Instilling awe and wonder for learning in the children at an early stage
- Laying solid foundations for progression to Juniors, allowing the children to grow as independent learners
- Building up confidence in the children to have a go and persevere to attain success.
Here in the Infant Department, we benefit from 6 small classes that are year group specific and also have five classroom assistants. This allows us the privilege of really getting to know our children on an individual basis. We aim to give the children a really solid educational foundation with their learning by exploring lots of topics that inspire their interests and encourage them to want to find out more. We use a mix of visual, audio and kinaesthetic teaching methods, complementing the learning styles of the children and giving a more rounded learning experience.
We run the Read Write Inc. Phonics programme in three one-hour sessions each week, which develops the children’s phonic knowledge alongside their reading, spelling, comprehension and writing skills. They are regularly assessed and work in groups that are at the same level to ensure full understanding and better progression. This knowledge is then used back in the classroom setting to inform teaching for each child, allowing all children to access the curriculum with confidence. We follow the Abacus maths scheme, which provides ongoing assessment so that we can accurately focus our teaching where the children need it to maximise their progress and understanding. This gives the children a self-awareness of their strengths and weaknesses and the skills to target for improvement.
We entrust the children with responsibilities both in the classroom and out in the playground; Year Two children can take on the role of ‘Playground Friends’, demonstrating their care for those around them. We build up the children’s social skills by encouraging them to be good listeners, to negotiate with others, to work and play co-operatively and to respect others.
We are fully committed to understanding each and every child’s individual needs and seek out what makes each of them different and unique. We encourage children to pursue and share their talents, giving them opportunities to shine. They will take part in the Harvest Festival performance and the Nativity play each year, having increased responsibilities as they go through the department. The children’s parents and their extended families and friends come to join these celebrations and we enjoy the experiences together.