From the moment children join us they are immersed in a rich world of language – from singing rhymes and telling stories to recognising names and, eventually, learning to write them.
Daily story time and rhyme sessions are usually linked to a theme. So the children might hear about Baby Bear’s rocket trip in Whatever Next! and join in with Zoom, zoom, zoom, we’re going to the moon when we’re looking at the subject of space, while a spell of wintery weather might lead to a story about snow and a rendition of Little Jackie Jack Frost. Later they might discuss or retell the story or perhaps re-enact it with props in our weekly drama spot.
Each classroom has its own reading and role play areas, so handling books and discovering how to communicate are just part of the everyday fun. Our pupils learn about a different sound each week – we ask them to bring in items that begin with that sound and introduce the basics of writing it down. If they’re not quite ready, they can always get stuck into free-drawing and mark-making with paints or craft materials instead.
Seeing and using their own name is part of the process – at self-registration, on their snacks and to label their pictures, for example. And we encourage them to try writing it down.
It’s a multi-layered approach to unlocking each child’s imagination and inspiring a passion for the spoken and written word.