Our youngest children are housed in a large purpose built space in the 2017 extension, including an outdoor classroom with facilities for up to 45 children. The teaching team is led by Mrs Karen Cotton. While Mrs Cotton is the notional key worker for all our youngest children, parents and carers can be confident in approaching any of the EYFS teaching team should they have a query or concern.
The importance of play - in the home as well as school cannot be overstated.
The Early Years Curriculum for the Foundation Stage in our reception class is Foundation Stage 2, the end of an early years provision that for most children will have started in nursery, play group or with a registered childminder. The team meet with childcare providers throughout the year and in the Summer term to ensure effective transfer of information and assessments from children's first educational settings.
Children are taught the EYFS curriculum, aiming to achieve 13 Early Learning Goals (ELG) at the end of the academic year. All areas of learning are considered equally important in the early years. If children have achieved the ELG in the first 11 areas they are considered to have achieved a 'good level of development' for their age and be able to make a smooth transition to Key Stage 1 without additional support. Further information can be found in our Curriculum, Teaching and Learning document
Assessment in the EYFS is part of teachers' daily teaching to which parents and carers contribute through Tapestry, an online platform. This means that things children show at home but not yet in school, can be included in their profile.
A welcome from the headteacher - Ms Stewart
It has been a real delight to begin welcoming your children and starting to learn some names. In the first instance the most important people they need to know are the staff working daily in class (see below for the EYFS team) but I am looking forward to coming in and reading stories before too long. We have been really impressed by how well your children have settled, this year more than any we didn't know what to expect. Children may have missed out on their last months at nursery, pre-school or with their childminder, but they have clearly benefited from their time at home. As well as enjoying the company and time with parents, they have also had to get used to working parents and making their own amusements. I have been impressed with how so many can sustain concentration and interest in their own child initiated learning in their first days. Self motivation and being absorbed are so important for learning :-)
Laura CottamBEd (Hons) with Modern Languages
Mrs Cottam works as a teaching assistant in class Monday-Wednesday and on Thursday and Friday is Sarah Peacock's job share teacher. Laura worked as a teacher in Key Stage 2 before joining our EYFS team - the youngest children are her real passion.
Karen CottonBEd (Hons) Primary Education with Mathematics, Outdoor Learning Practitioner (level 2), NPQML
Mrs Cotton is the full time teacher and team leader for the forty five children and staff in the Reception phase. She takes responsibility for parent partnership and family engagement and this year has brought 1-2-3 Magic Parenting sessions into school will her colleague Emma Wood.
Mrs Cotton has taught throughout the primary phase and worked as a leading Mathematics teacher for Cheshire.
Sarah PeacockBSocSci (Hons) Sociology, PGCE Primary
Mrs Peacock has worked in Lower and Upper Key Stage 2 before taking the plunge and moving to Early Years in 2015. She job-shares her teaching role in class with Laura Cottam as well as leading English with Sophie Maynes and Lucia Roberts. Sarah co-led the Global Learning Programme where the school was a designated expert centre. Her two daughters, now at high school, both attended Kingsmead.
Natalie PlumbleyBA (Hons) English Literature, PGCE Primary specialism in Early Years
Mrs Plumbley joined us as a teaching assistant in September 2019. Before joining us in September 2019, Natalie has worked as a teacher in Key Stages 1 and 2 with a specialism in early years. Natalie has a particular interest in the environment and education for a more sustainable world. As well as working with us Natalie is a farmer on a mixed farm in Cheshire.
Kate SmithBA (Hons) Music, PGCE Primary
Also qualified teacher, Kate has taught in EYFS and worked with us as a TA in Key Stage 1, LKS2 and UKS2.