Early Years Foundation Stage

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Early Years Foundation Stage

Post by JIM CURRAN » Wed Oct 13, 2010 1:27 pm

One in six boys can't write their own name by the age of five

By Laura Clark

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... z12F17xoOW

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Re: Early Years Foundation Stage

Post by maizie » Wed Oct 13, 2010 3:33 pm

Sorry, but what is so shocking about that? Name writing at an early age is more of a trick taught by proud parents than a necessary accomplishment. I couldn't write (or even read) my name at age 5.

(I confess to not having read the article; does it have more depth than the headline suggests?)

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Re: Early Years Foundation Stage

Post by Maltesers » Wed Oct 13, 2010 8:26 pm

I sometimes wonder what all the rush is about. As long as they can read and write by the time they get to the end of Primary school. I think we sometimes push too much on our little ones. Let them be little and let them play.


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Re: Early Years Foundation Stage

Post by JIM CURRAN » Thu Oct 14, 2010 11:40 am

I agree Maltesers that we should “let them be little and let them play” but this shouldn’t be to the exclusion of teaching and learning. The school day is long enough for both of these activities to occur.

In Northern Ireland many schools particularly in disadvantaged areas were encouraged to promote ‘The Enriched Curriculum’, which was almost exclusively play based. I spoke to a teacher who taught these children in year 4. He said that not only could the boys not hold a pencil but that all they wanted to do was play.

All young children need to play but disadvantaged children who are already far behind their more advantaged peers when they begin school need teachers to teach them, if they are not going to be further disadvantaged.

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Re: Early Years Foundation Stage

Post by Kiki » Thu Oct 14, 2010 3:59 pm

The hardest transition any of my children has ever experienced has been the move from Foundation into Year 1 which has always left me wondering what kind of 'foundation' the school thought they were laying? It would make much more sense if the 'formality' and structure were gently introduced and increased over 3 terms so that the next stage wasn't such a terrible shock.

I am also reminded of a Foundation stage teacher who came to me wanting to buy some books but was really stuck as she wasn't 'allowed' to buy anything that could be construed as 'educational'!!

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Re: Early Years Foundation Stage

Post by g.carter » Thu Oct 14, 2010 4:26 pm

This is the big conundrum at the moment. Many teachers are so neurotic, fearful, defensive about how to teach reading that children in many Reception classes suffer. That's one of the reasons that I like Jolly Phonics at this age - it is so little- child friendly and easy for a teacher to understand the process.

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Re: Early Years Foundation Stage

Post by Anne Mc Keefry » Fri Oct 15, 2010 10:55 am

I couldn’t agree more Geraldine, the story, action and song all help the children remember the sounds. More than nine years ago when I first discovered Jolly Phonics all I had was Sue Lloyd’s Phonics Handbook. I remember sitting on the carpet surrounded by 27 four & five year olds and teaching the second sound /a/. I was describing a picnic with my family and just after I said that I had spread a rug on the ground one little girl spontaneously asked “Teacher was it a beautiful, colourful rug?”

It was the beginning of a wonderful journey with many magical moments and also plugged an enormous gap in my knowledge of how to teach reading and spelling. For the rest of that year in about 20 minutes each day, the children were building vocabulary, developing story telling skills (the story outline for each sound meant that teacher and pupils were able to create the story) learning how to blend and segment and by the end of their first year at school many were writing their own stories and reading independently.

Jolly phonics is definitely a language rich programme and with all the great resources and opportunities for training it is a great shame that so few schools in N Ireland take it on or if they do use it implement it properly.

My grandson is extremely happy in his play based first year at school but with his parents’ approval and support he is also enjoying Jolly Phonics lessons with Granny!

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