Jump to content
Home
Forum
Join Us
Articles
About Us
Tapestry

Free Flow In Reception


 Share

Recommended Posts

Hi all,

 

I have just started work in a reception class which has 2 classes combined = 60 children. Having come from a pre school/nursery background and having a maximum of 20-30 freeflow, I am interested in how freeflow with 60 children can work effectively and what other reception classes do.

 

Thanks

 

Net xx

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi SP6,

 

Coming into this environment from pre school it seems more like crowd control rather than supporting learning.

I was just wondering how you do it. Do you put out activities for them to access, how many staff, do you allocate areas etc etc.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi

My goodness I was going to start a topic very similar to this! I started working in Reception last January and we had 3 classes with 67 total in a free flow situation. We start off as separate classes for register/intro. to the day and then open the classes up so it is one big classroom. We spread all the learning areas over the 3 classes (eg creative/book/playdough etc) and we share the outside space. The children are free to flow in any classroom or outside. Everything is available for them to access and choose independently so we don't need to put out specific activities unless it is adult led. Our focus groups take place in or outside and adults who aren't involved in group work are free to play with children/observe play and extend learning. We come together again as a class just before/after lunch, for phonics and at the end of the day (circle time/stories etc.) We do weekly challenges which link to the learning which helps to focus children. Also, we will often have an adult led activity inside and outside which children can choose to do - again, which helps to give some focus. It worked well generally.....I hope that helps. We had 3 teachers, 1 nursery nurse and 2 TAs.

 

I am now going to jump on your bandwagon slightly, I hope you don't mind!! We are now a 90 intake with the same free flow situation and I am finding it a lot harder than last year. I know it is early in the term but with so many children and 7 adults it feels very chaotic and at the moment I am finding it unmanageable - purely due to the numbers. I am in the final term of my NQT and so not massively experienced. So, to carry on from your question - does anybody also have experience of large numbers with free flow?

(If anybody has a 90 intake with freeflow between 3 classes in the London area and wouldn't mind me coming to visit you I would really appreciate it, perhaps you could send me a private message?)

 

Looking forward to hearing how others do it, again apologies for jumping in on your question but it felt silly to start a new topic as it was so similar.

 

All the best

LittleMiss

Edited by Guest
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi SP6,

 

Coming into this environment from pre school it seems more like crowd control rather than supporting learning.

I was just wondering how you do it. Do you put out activities for them to access, how many staff, do you allocate areas etc etc.

 

Hi there

 

We have up to 60 children, although only 52 at the moment between two rooms joined by a an arch way, where there used to be doors. We have 2 teachers, 2 full time TA and then a special needs assistant for a boy with CP for 20 hours of the week which is until 1.45pm each day. We run a timetable across the year group, see the attachment, we always have an adult outside. We have specific areas in the classrooms, mark making, PSRN, construction, physical etc... and we have rules about number of things we can have out in each area which they soon catch onto. At the beginning of the year we get things out for them so that we are setting the example linked to the rules, helps them know something is out when they first come in and helps them get to know what is available. We phase this out during the year and in the afternoons the choose for themselves. They are also taught that if they want something different out they have to tidy away the other toy first. It is early days at the moment in the year and it can become hectic at times but when I listen to the conversations going on, they are really engrossed in their play. If you have any other questions just ask - I can always upload some up to date photos of our set up if it would help.

 

21st_September_2009.doc

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you both, VERY interesting.

 

So you have separate planning for ezuipment and learning intentions outside. If so, do you pre plan everything that goes out or take each day as it comes with child initiated choices.

 

At the moment we mainly have bikes, scooters, large garden games, stilts, large construction bricks and emergency service role play outfits/hats. As the year progresses we become more focussed - mark making on the playground using chalks and paint brushes and water is an example of one. We tend to write it on the timetable but it is all very flexible and reactive to the children.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just re read my post and must wake up on my spelling.

 

My last question is - Does your outside area have the same learning intentions as your indoor area. Or do you have free flow obs for outside with more general planning surrounding the activity rather than learning intention

 

e.g.

Learning Intention - PSED - Display high levels of involvment in activities and then plan outside resources around LI

 

 

OR

 

Home Corner Outside - covers PSED, CLL, PSRN etc etc

 

I hope this makes sense

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We don't have separate planning/learning intentions unless there is something outlandishly different going on from the inside. The main intentions at the moment are probably the one about working together and sharing, using small and large equipment, moving with control and coordination, using language to recreate roles etc... and they would apply inside and out so i do not see any need to have separte one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

I am so glad to hear that freeflow works successfully in some settings!! I have just moved into the foundation stage as FS Co-ordinator. We have 3 classes, comprising 90 children and a further 15 in the nursery. I am really struggling to get everyone on board with the idea of freeflow between the classes but it is also something of a logistical nightmare as the 3 classes are completely separate classrooms, with a separate nursery unit. We all share the same outside area.

 

Currently each classroom provides role play, creative, PSRN, writing etc areas and as such the rooms are very cramped and resources are tight! I feel it would be much better if we could set out different areas creatively in the different classrooms and allow the children to freeflow between them all and the outside area (2 reception classes and the nursery open out on to the outside area and the other classroom is a little further down the corridor).

 

I am meeting a huge amount of resistance to such an idea and have only just managed to get all the classes freeflowing between their own rooms and the outside area!

 

Am I being completely idealistic or should it be possible to achieve true free flow?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 years later...

I have just read this thread and it all sounds great. I have just taken on FS co-ordinator in Nursery and my first year in FS but the SMT have raised concernes in the reception classes about freeflow. Whilst understanding the concept of it - they are concerned children are not accessing all areas and not being challenged enough and not enough adults watching the children - which unfortunately I see their point.

We are 2 separate classroom with an outdoor space with role play and an outdoor garden space there are 50 children, 2 teachers and 2 TA's.The childrne currently freeflow all day between the 2 classrooms and the open space which is role play. 2 teachers do focus activities, 1 TA is in the open space.

Any ideas on how to extend the children? We are thinking about opening certain areas in the moring and then opening the other areas in the afternoon but not sure if this defeats purpose of freeflow. Currently there are too many areas in too many corners and not enough staff to monitor - one bioy was observed being a magician for an hour with no adult interaction and no learning!!!! We area slo due an OFSTED any time - ARRRGGGH!!

Any advice???

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 6 months later...

What we have done is have activities set out for the children to access. In order to make sure they are progressing we ask them to see 2 teachers during the free flow session as we are based at focused activities. This tells us that they are accessing areas of the class they enjoy and selecting their own activities of their choice but also knowing that they are learning specific LI's as they do 2 adult led activities.

How do you guys feel about this? Too adult initiated or enough child initiated within boundaries?

We started on complete free flow like our Nursery classes but the kids were off the wall and after each session it looked like the class had exploded as the didn't know how to pack away anything.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

We also have 2 classes which we run as free flow thoughtout the day. There are roughly 60 children at the moment and I have to say at times this term I have been tempted to say it is too hectic noisy etc and I know some of my staff have been saying this quietly to each other(!!) But I also know that we will reap the benefits next term as the children will be more settled and know the routines expectations etc. My advise would be stick with it - it does work and the observations and ideas the children have contributed to the planning woudlnt have come about if they were stuck in one room with the same children!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue. (Privacy Policy)