How the topics are chosen and agreed
Every day a focused session which includes all the children and the staff takes place. The children decide together if they would like to move on to a new theme. During one of these sessions the children were observed agreeing to carry on with their topic which was based around fairy stories, the three little pigs. For example, they talked with confidence about how they had used their creative skills to create their role play and used the instruments to sing and to act out the story.
How these ideas move forward into learning activities
The children then design and build their own role play. The children had made a brick wall, used drinking straws and a beige sheet on a table for the straw house, used a fox hood for the wolf, the nearest thing they could find. Word recognition and singing songs, and laughing when the wolf ran off. They made suggestions to extend this topic and acted out the three Billy goats gruff. There was a buzz of excitement as these ideas came to life for all the children to see.
Once the learning environment has been set up, the staff's role is to then structure the Early Years Foundation Stage around the children’s needs and the key skills to be developed are clearly identified. A planning sheet is produced which highlights activities for the foundation skills to be developed. Adaptations are then made to the learning environment to ensure that key skills are systematically covered and staff know exactly what is to be developed in each area. An extended provision sheet is displayed in each area. Planning in this way ensures that experimental learning is at the heart of everything we do. As the children are becoming more comfortable with leading their learning, the level of topic ideas becomes wider and more adventurous. We see a progression from princesses and castles to dinosaurs, to planting to why do we grow? This development of their understanding of what learning can be is far in advance of their chronological age.
Reg Charity 1036707