A vision from our Reception Team

We aim to develop depth of learning through exploration, by fostering children’s natural curiosity, leading them to become resilient, independent, life-long learners.  Using our creative indoor and outdoor environments, we facilitate a variety of exciting learning experiences with a combination of child-led learning and teacher directed opportunities.  This empowers children to discover through play and work towards achieving their ‘Early Learning Goals'.

At Thomas Becket, children embark on an engaging journey of discovery where we aim to develop and nurture strong, positive attitudes towards learning. Our child-centred approach offers rich and vibrant opportunities to learn, which draw upon children’s own experiences and prior learning.

We believe in knowing each child as an individual. Our highly skilled team of early years professionals celebrate children’s strengths whilst supporting their individual needs. Through strong relationships with the children and their parents, we are able to support each child’s unique learning journey so that they are confident and well prepared for the next steps in their development.


As children commence their journey at school, we begin to develop and nurture strong, positive attitudes where they become proud and respectful of themselves, others and their environment.

We aim to offer rich and vibrant opportunities which draw upon children’s own experiences and prior learning. The curriculum is designed so that it is ambitious for all learners. We aim to develop the knowledge, skills and understanding appropriate to the stage of development of each child to enable them to flourish and reach their potential.

We aim to explicitly teach the knowledge appropriate to the development of children at this phase of their education.

We see sequential building of skills as essential for life- long learning, so basic skills have been carefully mapped in English and Maths for Reception.

We aim to plan ongoing opportunities for children to revisit knowledge and skills through a variety of targeted and independent learning opportunities for children to commit this knowledge and skills to their long-term memory.

Building vocabulary is the key to everything. The more words a child knows, and understands, the more confident they become, the easier it will be for them to learn to read and to access the rest of the curriculum.

It is vital that children develop a good vocabulary. It brings them confidence when they can articulate what they’re thinking through a good vocabulary.


The curriculum in Reception meets the requirements set out in the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage. Our curriculum planning focuses on the Characteristics of Learning and Early Learning Goals expectations and uses Development Matters to support the tracking of progress.

Our school fully supports the principle that young children learn through play, and by engaging in well planned and structured activities. Children have access to both indoor and outdoor learning environments. Teaching in the Reception classes builds on careful baseline assessments carried out when children join the setting and progress within the phase is carefully planned for and tracked throughout the year.

The practitioners assess the skills development of each child and record this in the Learning Journey books, online using Tapestry and on the school tracking system. This assessment forms an important part of the future curriculum planning for each child.

Learning is planned through broad themes, often based on a quality picture book, where core skills and learning behaviours can be practised and developed.

Skills in maths and English are carefully mapped across the year. Leaning is maths supported by the Big Maths teaching programme. Reading and spelling are supported by the Read, Write In phonics programme.

We are proud of the strong relationship we have with parents and use this positively to ensure that children have a joint support approach to make good progress in school. We strive to build positive links with the parents of each child, by keeping them informed about how the children are being taught, and how well each child is progressing.

We provide opportunities for children gain new vocabulary through the activities that they are engaged in, but also ensure vocabulary is taught explicitly through reading to them. The most rapid way for children to increase their vocabulary is through listening to stories, rhymes and poems that they can then internalise, repeat and commit to long-term memory.


By the end of their year in Reception, we aim for children to confidently display the Characteristics of Learning and for all pupils to have made at least expected progress from their starting points. Most pupils will have reached the good level of development in the EYFS profile, with some pupils exceeding this level.