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I have been asked to work with my Reception group as with the 'old' Reception style :( ... nothing like the Foundation Stage. I have to put enfasis on Literacy and Numeracy over the balance that we should have with all the 6 areas.


Even more... until now I tried to work with a rich source of good books to work around topics (SS and ELG for sure) and now I have to just work with the ORT :( and Jolly Phonics :D ... but both don't match 100% :o . Boy!


I can understand that the HT has a lot of work, but each day it just makes me wonder how much does he know of the FS. We are not a British school, yet we do use the British curriculum.


I know that maybe you cannot help me... but I needed to cry out since I just get confused more and more. Now it will not be BTT and FS, but "Pre-school". We were called to work as a team and do lots of things in common. Since BTT and FS1 do celebrate the children birthdays in their classrooms, I asked if it could be reconsidered that mine FS2/Reception could also have a simple celebration (just a small cake from their parents) and I was told not to because it is stated like that in the Parent's Handbook and because my group had to cover lots of 'academics' xD .


What can I do?

Edited by SmileyPR
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Dear Smiley,

Oh, how sad - I really do think we are asking such a lot of our children - yes of course many of them will take on the "academic" side and whizz away with their reading and writing and mathematics. But let's face it as we know they are only 4 and 5 years old - still babies really and only coming to terms with their world - their ability to read and write is not necessarily going to make them into good kind children with values of their own but we all know that. Isn't it about time people learnt that there is a balance. I once went to an interview where the personnel lady said of course these parents pay and they therefore expect results!! I suppose these were the tangible results of parents being able to see their ability to read and write. Needless to say I didn't take the job and interestingly enough the school under this new management has struggled to the point where they lost a whole class year apart from one child!!! I always say that my job is more about educating the parents than the child.

I think you will have to keep at it, use research to support your case and you are going to have to try and find a happy medium. Good luck - I am sure you can be really creative and use the Jolly Phonics to your advantage - like just why hasn't the snake eaten the mouse!!


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I'm so sorry you are unhappy with how your HT wants to push your Reception backwards. And that is it - backwards. Whether you are a British school or not - you are working within the British Curriculum, which pushes for a more hollistic approach to the FS.


I take it that there is no flexibility with your HT? Have you approached him with evidence on how best to approach the FS and the benefits that focusing on the 6 areas of learning has, rather than a blinkered Lit/Num format?


I've been in a similar situation, but luckily the new head has driven forward a more appropriate FS. He's pushing it forward, slowly, but surely. I started looking for other jobs because at the time, there was definitely no manouverability and I was unhappy and I could no longer breathe within the constrainsts of the job. I guess what you should be asking yourself is - is this where you want to be?


Good luck and my thoughts are with you.

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First of all, thanks Nicola and Gater for your words of wisdom and best wishes for my situation.


Well... I don't have a choice of job :o . I do not dominate the native language where I live and it is very difficult to get a job as a teacher if you don't have a title given by this country... , especilly if you come from out of the EU. I must say that in other ways our school does have a good 'atmosphere' and maybe, because of this hope, I keep going.


I think the HT knows that it could be better otherwise and he tries to give me 'freedom', but there is a lot of pressure from the parents for 'results' as well from the Head Mistress (owner of the school) who has a more 'traditional' point of view. This is a private school, so then things are less 'govermental' to the country I live in and to the U.K.


The children love Jolly Phonics and this has created a lot of interest in them to learn to read and write. I started using JP last January, but I am sure the results will be even better this year... hopefully xD . I suggested to the HT to buy the Jolly Songs and the Jolly Jingles, although I must say that the children prefer Jolly Songs since they are shorter and more simple. Some children finish their snacks before others and they ask for me to put the Jolly Songs CD so they can sing and dance to it :D.


The HT is not asking me a 'formal literacy' hour and just suggested to work in 2 small groups. While I work with one group for 10 minutes, then the other ones can have a quiet reading time of any favourite book they wish to choose from our small class 'library'. Then I would take the other book and do the same. So I suppose I can do that and then let them have some child-initiated play and keep swapping between formal and informal learning.


I must be positive and find creative ways to respond to my reality. Again, thanks for your inspiration :).

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