St Matthew's Primary School & Nursery

Early Years

The new Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum has come into place as of September 2021.   The Early Years Curriculum is based on seven key areas of learning:

Prime Areas of Learning
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Communication and Language
Physical Development

Specific Areas of Learning
Literacy
Mathematics
Understanding the World
Expressive Arts and Design

RE (Religious Education) is taught as an additional lesson to support Understanding the World.  Parents contribute to their child's learning journey through the online learning journal Tapestry.

We offer all parents a one to one meeting with the Nursery or Reception Class teacher before the children start school so that we are able to learn more about the individual child, their likes and dislikes and how we can ensure they settle happily and quickly into school life.

This year, we have introduced some important and significant changes to our Early Years Curriculum at St Matthew’s.  Some of these exciting changes have been summarised below:

  • Termly topics will be in the form of Big Questions.   These questions will allow a more open-ended approach to our learning with activities largely based on the children’s interests.
  • We will continue to use ‘Tapestry’, our online learning journal, to share your child’s learning journey using photographs and videos. Each post will be accompanied by a short caption to briefly explain the child’s learning or activity. 
  • Parents and carers will be able to use Tapestry at home to document key learning moments at home, such as learning how to ride a bike or going on an outing.
  • This year, we will be choosing three or four children each week as ‘focus children’ in the class. Staff will observe and create a detailed observation of each child’s learning journey throughout that week. These will be uploaded to Tapestry at the end of the week for parents to view and comment on. Every child in the class will have a focussed learning journey completed each small term – six per year.

Characteristics of Effective Learning
The Characteristics of Effective Learning describe behaviours children use in order to learn.  Through our Early Years Curriculum, we encourage children to approach opportunities with curiosity, energy and enthusiasm.  We aim for children to be able to use what they have learned and apply it to new situations both in and out of school:
Playing and Exploring
- children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’
Active Learning - children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements
Creating and thinking critically - children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things


Please visit our Nursery and Reception Class pages to find out more about the curriculum in each year group and the key texts the children will read each term.

Please visit our Admissions Page for information about applying to our Nursery and Reception Classes.

Click on the link below to see the presentation from Ms Green's recent Early Years and KS1 Reading Workshop:

Early Years and KS1 Reading Workshop (Ms Green)