Skip to content ↓
St. Mary's Catholic Primary School

St. Mary's Catholic Primary School

A place of educational excellence with Christ at the centre

Farmers/Foundation Stage

Welcome to the foundation stage/ Year 1 classroom. 








Welcome to St. Mary’s School Early Years Foundation Stage


At St Mary’s we believe that each child is entitled to a positive and meaningful start to their school life, in which they can establish solid foundations on which to develop into independent and fearless lifelong learners.

Our aim is to:

  • Encourage children to develop independence within a secure and friendly atmosphere
  • Support children in building relationships through the development of social skills such as cooperation and sharing
  • Help each child to recognise their own strengths and achievements through experiencing success and by developing the confidence to work towards personal goals.

Our high expectations will enable each child to develop socially, physically, intellectually and emotionally and to achieve their full potential. We offer a structure for learning that has a range of starting points and unlimited availability for development through a wide range of new and exciting first-hand experiences that will give children the opportunity to consolidate, explore and test their skills, knowledge and understanding alongside existing experiences. We will ensure that children are kept healthy and safe and that they achieve the knowledge and skills they need to start school.


A Unique Child

Every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured. 

We recognise that every child is a competent learner who can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured. We recognise that children develop in individual ways, at varying rates. Children’s attitudes and dispositions to learning are influenced by feedback from others; we use praise and encouragement, as well as celebration/ sharing assemblies and rewards, to encourage children to develop a positive attitude to learning. We ensure the St. Marys Primary School reward policy is followed in the Reception class.


• understand and observe each child’s development and learning, assess progress, plan for next steps

• support children to develop a positive sense of their own identity and culture

• identify any need for additional support

• keep children safe

• value and respect all children and families equally

Positive Relationships

Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships. 

We recognise that children learn to be strong and independent from secure relationships and aim to develop caring, respectful and professional relationships with the children and their families.

We are……

• • warm and loving, and foster a sense of belonging

• sensitive and responsive to the child’s needs, feelings and interests

• supportive of the child’s own efforts and independence

• consistent in setting clear boundaries

 • constantly building on relationships in early years settings

Enabling Environments

Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and carers.  

We recognise that the environment plays a key role in supporting and extending the children’s development. Through observations we assess the children’s interests and stages of development and learning needs before planning challenging and achievable activities and experiences to extend their learning, this includes adapting the environment to suit the needs of the children.

We offer

• stimulating resources, relevant to all the children’s cultures and communities

• rich learning opportunities through play and playful teaching

• support for children to take risks and explore

Learning and development

Children develop and learn in different ways. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities 

Our Reception class is based in the main school building and is organised to meet the needs of the Early Years Curriculum. The learning environment is organised to allow children to explore and learn securely and safely. The areas of learning are defined so that children are able to find and locate equipment and resources independently.

We establish each child’s learning needs by using transition data from Nursery’s and Pre-schools as well as information from our own baseline assessments


• Provide opportunities for Playing and exploring

• Encourage Active learning

• Provide opportunities for the children to Create and Think Critically

Play based activities

Learning through play underpins our approach to teaching and learning in the foundation stage and the delivery of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. We embrace the fact that young children learn best from activities and experiences that interest and inspire them to learn. In doing so we provide children with stimulating, active experiences in which they can explore and develop their learning and to help them make sense of the world. Children have opportunities through their play to think creatively and critically alongside other children as well as on their own. They are able to practise skills, build upon and revisit prior learning and experiences at their own level and pace. Play gives our children the opportunity to pursue their own interests, inspire those around them and consolidate their understanding and skills. The children learn to adapt, negotiate, communicate, discuss, investigate and ask questions. Our adults take an active role in child initiated play through observing, modelling, facilitating, teaching and extending play, skills and language. Play based activities are based on the long term topics for our school and are catered for through a variety of learning areas within the classroom.

Parents as Partners

We believe that parents and carers are a child’s first educator and therefore work very closely to ensure they are involved in what their child does at school.  We want parents to feel they can speak to us about their child and to feel comfortable in our setting. We offer parents the opportunity to share their child’s learning environment, have time to talk informally with the practitioners and to meet other parents during school ‘book look’ sessions and during termly parent consultation meetings. 

We also offer parents learning workshops to provide advice and information on how they can support their child’s learning through a ‘meet the teacher’ session and a ‘Phonic’ workshop during Autumn term one. Parents are welcomed and encouraged to share information about their child, to ask questions and to discuss their child’s learning with the teachers.  Parents are provided with ‘wow’ forms which they can fill in to share their child’s learning achievements at home.

At the beginning of the year parents are encouraged to take time to settle their child happily into class during the first few weeks of school. We then encourage the children’s independence by asking them to say good bye to their parents on the playground and then lining up by the class to be greeted by the class teacher. The children will then come into class to put their own things away and sign in using the self-registration post box.

We offer you a very warm welcome to our Reception learning environment and Early Years setting.

                                        Farmers Class 2021-2022