Early Years Foundation Stage
Northside Primary School is a small, diverse school where the highly-skilled, established, cohesive staff are committed to creating the positive family-feel of a village school in North Finchley. In such a diverse community, learning about different religions, beliefs and spiritual values is of paramount importance. Even though the Northside children are very individual, coming from many different cultures and backgrounds, speaking over 40 different languages, the culture of joint ownership from all stakeholders creates a happy community. Differences are celebrated and used to build a strong school culture, ensuring Northside children are Happy to Learn and Inspired to Flourish.
It is the intent of the school to provide a broad, well-balanced, play-based early years’ curriculum which considers each child's individual needs, enabling them to become enthusiastic self-motivated learners. We recognise that at this age children require an active learning environment where they can build on their enthusiasms and individual experiences and that the curriculum should be flexible enough to reflect a wide range of developmental needs. We also feel that it is important to value each child's background, culture and traditions as an important part of their initial experiences.
We implement our Early Years curriculum through a balance of visual, auditory and kinaesthetic activities and resources. We encourage play based learning and create topics around the children's interests and the religions and cultures of our diverse families. Children have free flow access between the inside and outside classrooms, ensuring the Characteristics of Effective Learning is embedded throughout our environment. The children's independence to engage and extend their learning is encouraged, by creating an enabling environment to select their own level of challenge. All staff members model and scaffold the children within their chosen play to help each individual progress. The Northside Values (Respect, Pride, Inclusion, Challenge, Creativity, Resilience) are all integral to the Early Years curriculum. We learn about each value every half term, and link them to our learning. Links with all stakeholders (parents, the local community, other schools etc.) are used to deepen knowledge and improve skills.
Northside children will move on from the Early Years with the skills and school readiness they need to continue their school career. We aspire for all children to achieve the age expectations within the 7 areas of learning (Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Communication and Language, Physical Development, Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design). The children will be able to form positive relationships, recognise and understand boundaries, initiate their own experiences, create and solve problems, experiment with ways of using equipment and materials, practise and refine skills (such as reading, writing, solving Mathematic problems) and communicate well to talk about their experiences and discoveries.