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Ci, Ad, Ai, Af Activities - Help!


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Hi guys,


I know I've been doing this job for 2 terms now, and I love it, but I am so confused about the difference between CI, AI, AD, and AF activities and how 'many' of each we are supposed to be including each week - can anyone help me?

I'm an NQT but am Primary trained as opposed to EY trained so am slightly out of my depth in this area - but significantly less now than I was in September. I have tried to ask my coordinator... but don't really get a 'proper' answer, so have been following her lead, and she does 1 Literacy adult focussed activity per week with 1 guided reading session for each group every week. Yet to me, this doesn't seem like enough.


There are other things that don't quite add up either, but it's hard when you're an NQT, working in free flow classrooms (it's free flow all the time.... carpet time is not easy when 1 class is loud and 1 is fairly quiet!) with the coordinator to suggest or say anything.


I'm sorry... this has turned into a bit of a moan! I feel awful now, because I adore my class and I love the job... I just want to be the best I can be at it.


Thanks guys!


Sam x

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Hi - I always think you need to do what is best for you and the children in your setting personally. I always try to keep in mind that there are six areas of development that should have equal coverage but ... having said that I do a daily adult led phonics session and usually try to ensure they are adult initiatied phonics activites relating to our phonics for that week out somewhere in my setting. I try to do the same with numeracy too - even if that means putting it in the sand or water tray! I would probably only do one literacy focussed adult led activity in the week but that doesnt mean that the other focus activities wouldnt have opps for the children to practise their skills too - we might want to practise speaking and listening skills in a PSED adult led activity or our writing skills in a K&U activity. Thats how I make myself feel better anyway and I am sure thats what you already do anyway! I am the foundation leader in my school - we have regular meetings to talk about the way things are going in our Nursery and Reception classes with all the staff where we can informally chat things over and try and solve problems without them becoming issues - could you suggest this to your FS leader? if you involve the whole team it wont seem as if its just you? Sorry if that was no help! Ems x :o

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Guest heleng

I think this is what each of those abbreviations means:

CI= child initiated, where the child has chosen what to do and is leading their own learning.

AI= adult initiated, where the adult has initiated the activity but the child can take it in any direction that they choose to.

AD= adult directed, I would say this is the same as AF (adult focused) and is when the children are working with an adult to complete a task or activity.


We have nursery and Reception together in the same space and treat it as one large class as much as possible.

The children access the CI through the continuous provision activities we have in the classroom. We work with a floater who is observing and extending play and maybe involved in the AI side of things. Then we have adult focused activities where ind or small gps of children work with an adult on a specific skill or activity.


Although 1 literacy adult focused activity a week and 1 guided reading might not sound much don't forget about your letters and sounds (we do a session daily), story time (we discuss books as well as read them) and we also have carpet sessions where the input is literacy.


As ems said don't forget there are 6 areas of learning with each one having equal importance.

In Reception I believe there should be a balance between CI and AF activities (so roughly 50%) and then your AI is almost like a supplement. Don't forget all your carpet sessions and adult input is counted into your AF time.


Hope that helps in some way,


Edited by heleng
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I love introducing tasks as adult initiated.


I will show the children several techniques and then they choose whether to copy one of my ideas, adapt it or completely do their own thing.


We always end up with a wide variety of good quality outcomes..... with each child proud of their achievements wanting to take photos of their end product with the digiblue cameras.

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