In the Dragonflies room careful consideration is given to the format of the day, which is based on the Early Years Foundation Stage – with emphasis on developing social skills, forming friendships and role play. Language and communication skills are promoted through fun activities and during circle and story times. The seven areas of learning are covered with routines, activities and topic work. We value unplanned opportunities to seize the day and are flexible with our planning in response to the changing weather, children’s immediate interests, recent experiences and visitors. The children have opportunities to access all our resources and participate in our planning process. In preparation for ‘big school’ we encourage the children to develop their listening skills and to enjoy rhythm, music, stories and role play. We draw their attention to the sounds around us and to the words we use in conversation. We use Jolly Phonics to introduce simple sounds to the children. We provide many opportunities for mark making and emergent writing, helping the children to express themselves. The writing area has space and equipment for everyone to experiment with their marks and letters. Hopefully all the children will go off to school feeling confident with their early writing. Praise is given for all the different skills the children learn and for all the different achievements they make during the day.
The Dragonflies room has direct access to the pre-school garden. Children can play outside in the secure area where there is a popular mini beast/wildlife garden and a digging area. We also grow and eat our own vegetables each year, using recipes such as vegetable soup and apple pie! The curriculum contains both structured with adult led activities, and opportunities for free play in and around the room and the outside area. There are times for fun and discovery, for exploring and letting off steam, for quiet play and stories, for craft and messy play and for making friendships with their key person and with the other children. We pay particular attention to personal and social skills – wanting our children to be considerate and kind, with good self-esteem and developing a confidence to make sense of the world they live in. The children have the opportunity to take part in ‘Teddy Tennis’, which introduces them to early racquet and ball skills and assists with their hand/eye co-ordination. The children also enjoys weekly Spanish lessons which consist of lots of singing and games in Spanish. ‘Fernandos’, our friendly Spanish bear, is a big hit with the children and encourages the quieter children to participate in the activities.