The pre-school operates a Key Person Approach which is underpinned in attachment theory that suggests ‘if a child has one particular adult with whom they can build a positive relationship, when away from the family in a nursery setting, then their separation would be less stressful and their play and learning more positive’ (Goldschmied and Jackson 2004). The Early Years Foundation Stage states that ‘each child in a group must be assigned a Key Person, the Key Person has special responsibilities.
A Key Person will help your child to become familiar with the setting and to feel confident and safe within it. The Key Person will talk to parents to make sure that the needs of their child are being met appropriately, and that records of development and progress is shared. A Key Person will be assigned to your child within a few weeks of starting the pre-school; this is to allow time to see who your child forms attachments to. You will then receive a letter explaining who your child’s Key Person is and how the system operates.
The Early Years Foundation Stage.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS, 2017) sets the standards that all early year’s providers must meet to ensure that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe.
The Areas of Learning and Development
There are seven areas of learning and development that must shape educational programmes in early years settings. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These three are the Prime Areas: Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development. Settings must also support children in four Specific Areas: Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design. For more information about the Early Years Foundation Stage visit www.ncb.org.uk/ey/peertopeersupport
A baseline assessment will be undertaken within the first week of your child’s attendance at the pre-school. This information, along with parental discussion and the exploring of our Meeting Your Child’s Needs form, will form the starting point of your child’s learning and development.
Two Year Progress Check
The Early Years Foundation Stage states that ‘when a child is aged between two and three, practitioners must review their progress, and provide parents and/or carers with a short-written summary of their child’s development in the Prime Areas (Two Year Progress Check). This progress check must identify the child’s strengths and any areas where the child’s progress is less than expected. If there are significant emerging concerns, or an identified special educational need or disability, practitioners should develop a targeted plan to support the child’s future learning and development involving other professionals as appropriate.
The Key Person of each child will invite parents, when it is convenient for them, to come into the pre-school to discuss the progress check and how their child’s learning could be best supported at home and to also discuss any other issues or concerns. The progress check is expected to be provided in time to inform the Healthy Child Programme health and development review at age two where possible. (However, that will depend on the age in which your child starts at the pre-school). Your child’s Key Person will undertake the progress check when they believe that they know your child well enough to make an informed decision on their learning and development, this will generally be by the end of your child’s first term.
Observations: Formative Assessment
Observations will be undertaken by your child’s Key Person and other members of staff on a daily basis. Observations are usually written and photographs taken to provide evidence of your child’s learning and development. A consent form for taking photographs is in your child’s enrolment passport. The observations made will then inform how we plan to build on your child’s learning and development through their interests and specific learning styles.
In the Moment Planning
Through using in the moment planning children’s, current interests are identified regularly and staff are then able to plan and evaluate from day to day as opposed to week by week. In the moment planning allows no forward planning, staff are planning in the moment which are an extension of a child’s interests observed.
Child-led learning is particularly affective because it means children are engaged and involved. This is linked to better brain development in developing children.
Your child’s Key Person will share your child’s summative assessment through the progress check and at the end of the summer term.
During your child’s time at the pre-school we will create with you, your child and our observations and assessments a Learning Journey. The Learning Journey consists of observations, photographs, comments your child makes, any holiday photographs or things of interest from home. This will be through our EyLog system which generates an online Learning Journey for your convenience. We have found that using an electronic system allows for better two-way communication between the pre-school and our families. Your child’s Key Person will share your child’s Learning Journey with you at the end of each term (Summative Assessment) and also whenever you feel you would like to discuss any issues or concerns.
Our pre-school believes that parental involvement is paramount in meeting the individual needs of all children. We hope that the relationship you build with your Key Person and all other members of staff allows for a flow of important two-way information. We know that lots of things affect how children behave and we know that by sharing information we can support children and their families.
Our Behaviour Policy reflects our expectations that through providing children with the right enabling environment that children behave in a positive way. When there are times that we need to discuss with children their behaviour, we ask that they sit with their Key Person and reflect on their actions, appropriate to their age and understanding. All adults model and reinforce good behaviour, so that children learn to behave through positive praise.
The pre-school values itself as part of the wider community and as such takes part in local events such as St. Pirans Day, the Christmas Tree Festival at St. Petroc’s Church and any other relevant community events.
Our policies are available to read at induction and are available at all other times when new policies are added or adapted parents will be notified.
As we are a committee led pre school we believe that parental involvement is important to enable you and your child’s views to be considered at all times. We endeavour to hold committee meetings at least twice a year and all parents will be notified and invited to all meetings.