Early Years – Reception

 Welcome to Early Years at Thorndown Primary School


Play Based Curriculum

We deliver learning for all 17 areas of the Early Years Curriculum through purposeful play and learning experiences, with a balance of adult-led and child-initiated activities. Well planned play, both indoors and outdoors is one of the key ways in which children learn. It is the process through which children can explore, investigate, recreate and come to understand their world. It is not just imaginative play and role play but includes spontaneous, self-initiated lines of inquiry and exploration. Play is a vital component of children’s lives. It is an important way skills are developed and practised. Play is essential for physical, intellectual, linguistic, emotional, and behavioural and social development. At Thorndown we call this vital play Busy Learning.



We aim to create an attractive and stimulating learning environment where children feel confident, secure and challenged. The children have daily access to an indoor and outdoor environment that is set up in discrete areas of learning with planned continuous provision. Effective learning builds and extends upon prior learning and follows children’s interest. Effective planning is informed by observations of the children to ensure we follow their current interests and experiences. These observations are recorded in the children’s individual Learning Journey, which we encourage parents to look through. Play based learning is paramount and children direct their own learning from carefully planned opportunities provided by staff. Staff will enhance play and extend as needed to further individual learning.


The Team

We have 3 classes in Early Years

Mrs Hamilton – Team Leader for Early Years education across the school.. Mrs Hamilton loves getting muddy and reading children’s books. Her favourite is ‘Room on the Broom’ by Julia Donaldson.

Otter Class

Mrs Silvester – Otter Class Teacher. Mrs Silvester loves animals and bug hunting in our garden.

Mrs Comish – Dormouse Class Teaching Assistant. Mrs Comish  loves building using the wooden blocks and dancing to music.


Bumble Bee Class

Mrs Hamilton – Bumble Bee Class Teacher and Early Years Team Leader
Mrs Howell – Bumble Bee Class Teacher 3 days a week. Mrs Howell loves making up songs and loves learning about numbers.

Mrs Proudfoot – Otter Teaching Assistant. Mrs Proudfoot loves getting as messy as possible in the tuff spot and making our outside area really exciting

Robin Class

Mrs Cowan – Robin Class Teacher. Miss Cowan’s favourite story is ‘The Gruffalo’ and she loves painting on the easels.

Mrs Allen – Robin Class Teaching Assistant. Mrs Allen adores junk modelling and creating master pieces on the art table.



Other Adults

Mrs Sheppeard – PPA cover and EAL support.

Mrs Bralee – PPA  cover in Robin Class. Mrs Bralee loves chess club and finding out about other religions.

1:1 Teaching Assistants

Mrs Farish
Mrs Wootton
Mrs Wedvel
Mr Silver
Mrs Marshall


Early Years Foundation Stage Policy

2016 Transition Questionnaire responses
Number Sense for Reception parents
How to keep your child safe online – Childnet

Warm weather letter