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Teaching & Learning at Angels

At Angels, we have reshaped the way that we teach our children and how our environments are set up to enhance this. We have invested a vast amount of time and incorporated some lovely new items to ensure our environments are enabling. This is all due to our new found passion of 'loose parts play' and the 'curiosity approach' to learning. This leads us nicely into in the moment planning which is the way we are heading with regards to our planning and assessment process. In September 2021, a new Early Years Framework will be in place which has been initiated by the Government.

The changes to the EYFS statutory framework are being made to:

  • Improve outcomes at age 5, particularly in early language and literacy

  • Reduce workload such as unnecessary paperwork, so you can spend more time with the children in your care. (Department for Education 2021)

In line with the New Early Years framework, we are also following the Development Matters

2021 framework which states:

  • Children are powerful learners. Every child can make progress in their learning, with the right help.

  • Effective pedagogy is a mix of different approaches. Children learn through play, by adults modelling, by observing each other, and through guided learning and direct teaching.

  • Practitioners carefully organise enabling environments for high-quality play.

  • Sometimes, they make time and space available for children to invent their own play.

  • Sometimes, they join in to sensitively support and extend children’s learning.

We have been looking at this new approach for a while now and feel it would allow us to make a real difference to the children’s learning by seizing the moments when children first show interest and curiosity and immediately supporting their next steps. Planning in the moment is nothing new, it is exactly what a responsive parent does every day with their child, it is also exactly what a skilful practitioner has always done. Every time adults look and listen to a child they are assessing and planning how to respond. The adult will be considering whether they can add anything in the moment to benefit the child (teachable moment). If so, they will respond and interact accordingly.

How is it achieved?

The nursery setting is organised so that each child can take ownership over their own learning. They can decide which resources to use, whether to be alone or with others and for how long they want to pursue an activity. By doing this they become deeply involved in their task and progress is happening constantly. However, their level of involvement may drop for a variety of reasons; they may not know what to do or how to do something, another child may be disrupting their play or they may need something adding. When this happens, the child will seek help either from another child or an adult. This is when a skilful practitioner would step in and assess what is needed for the child to carry on. This is what we would call a teachable moment.

We also have introduced different topics for each month which give the children a basis of what we want children to learn so they have a varied and exciting curriculum. As an example, this month we are learning about Transport and link this to all of the 7 areas which are:

  • Communication & Language

  • Personal, Social & Emotional

  • Physical

  • Literacy

  • Mathematics

  • Understanding the World

  • Expressive Arts and Design

You may also notice from our newsletter that we also introduced a Country of the Month which we teach the children about and introduce them to new foods. We have many different celebrations that we celebrate and we learn about cultural events throughout the year. We are passionate about learning and our approach is having a positive impact on the children.

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