Teaching and learning is not limited to what we plan for and we know that different children will learn different things from the same experience. Learning is everywhere reflected in the environments, the resources, the daily routines and the relationships with parents and carers and of course… the other children. It is our job is to identify those ‘teachable moments’ and make the most of them.
We therefore, adopt a mix of specific, spontaneous and flexible planning so children have full access to broad range of exciting and high quality learning experiences. We plan different activities every day and sometimes we repeat favourites to allow children to revisit and consolidate their learning.
Specific planning– is linked to children’s educational needs and will focus on a particular area of development. This helps to ensure children are making good progress and are fully supported by our and experienced staff.
Spontaneous planning occurs when children show a particular interest or fascination. This prompts the staff to make changes to the environment to reflect this and extend children’s learning and knowledge by providing play experiences linked to their interest. Children have a high level of learning when they are fully involved, engaged and curios.
Flexible planning means we have a good balance of child initiated and adult led activities which takes account of the needs and interests of the children, rather than a fixed routine which must be followed minute by minute. This approach gives children the opportunity to concentrate for long periods of time, investigate resources, explore situations which interest them, thereby demonstrating deep involvement and high level learning, leading to better outcomes for everyone.
Our outdoor play opportunities are an extension of the indoor learning environment so there are plenty of mathematical activities such filling containers in the mud kitchen, to Literacy in the book den as well as plenty of areas for mark making, writing and being creative. Our free flow system ensures that children who love being in the garden and being outdoors can learn just as much, if not more so!
For younger babies the planning will look very different as we focus on their Communication and Language, Physical development and Personal, Social and Emotional development. Staff adapt and change activities many times throughout the day to capture babies’ excitement and interests ensuring there are plenty of quiet periods so staff and babies can explore books together, sing songs and build those strong, trusting bonds which are so important in the early stages of childhood.