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Reception routine


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Hello everyone,

I am hoping for some help and advice about my Reception class, I have been teaching nursery for 2 years and this year I have moved into Reception. There is an established Reception teacher amongst the team and at the moment I am following her lead and plans. I am really struggling with the demands of the routine and the level of work the children are required to do.

Today I have had 5 carpet sessions to teach, one session consisted of 2 worksheets and name writing. We have fitted in 2 playtime's (not outside provision just time out in an empty playground and that's not including lunch time).

The day is so jam packed that the children do not have any time to play I think 20 mins today was the most time spent on chosen learning without interruptions. I am proving sand, water and small world for my children but the other classes aren't.

 

Has the curriculum changed this much? where the focus is on so much formal learning and a routine more suited to year 1 and 2? I would appreciate any advice from Reception teachers on here, how do you organise your day? what are the expectations because I hoped it would be learning through play. Some of my children can just about get through the day and need lots of support , I haven't any time to build relationships with them. I'm constantly thinking about the next activity I never get to spend any time playing with and supporting the children which I feel is so important especially in these first weeks.

Thanks in advance for your help and support

Jo

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Jo Jo, I think what you are describing that you want to provide is the correct provision. Poor Children and poor you. Unfortunately though I am no longer in the classroom and feel unable to offer more support.

Is there any reason why you cant do things your way?

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I just want to offer the children the provision they need and provision to help them achieve. I am going to adjust my routine to accommodate more individual needs at this time in the academic year.

Thank you for your reply

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This is my first year in Mixed FS/Yr 1 class and it's early days. My FS are only doing mornings until Friday. We have settled into the routine of the children coming straight into busy time after self registering on plasma screen. Once the parents have all gone....about 20 mins or so....we gather on the carpet. The children then have an uninterrupted busy time session for about an hour before we have a shared snack while the Yr 1 children go out to join the rest of school for break. We then have another full hour before gathering for a pre-lunch story or sing. It seems to be working and it's giving me lots of time to get to know the children, carry out observations etc. I have also worked 1:1 with each of the children over a few days on more focused tasks.

No idea if I'm getting it right but we all seem happy!

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This sounds way too formal, I have worked in three schools as a Reception teacher and my only carpet sessions are for phonics, big book and maths which are daily and last no longer than 20 min. Sometimes we slot in circle activities for listening/PSED but they tend to be at the end of the day and instead of story sessions. If you are stopping for set playtimes that can really disrupt the learning. Do you have an outside area? Stopping for snack is also a pet peeve of mine and I always have a snack table going that they can visit throughout the day.

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This sounds way too formal, I have worked in three schools as a Reception teacher and my only carpet sessions are for phonics, big book and maths which are daily and last no longer than 20 min. Sometimes we slot in circle activities for listening/PSED but they tend to be at the end of the day and instead of story sessions. If you are stopping for set playtimes that can really disrupt the learning. Do you have an outside area? Stopping for snack is also a pet peeve of mine and I always have a snack table going that they can visit throughout the day.

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That's what I thought! I dislike stopping for snack too. I feel it's wasted time especially as it then goes into a carpet session. So more than an hour of the morning is taken up with break time fruit time carpet time! Then we tidy up after half an hour for lunch. I understand being more formal nearer the end if the year but not now. I am also not sure about how phonics is taught they learn with jolly phonics which is fine but then spend the focused tasks writing the letter really small over and over filling a whole worksheet. I would really appreciate advise.

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our day (year r) free choice first thing - 20 mins or so - gives us time to speak with parents, parents time to settle children. Then phonics - 10 mins. Free choice with focused tasks too until 10.30 when we stop for maths - again 10 mins. this gives time for a quick freshen up of the resources and a mini-plenary (look at this amazing painting Josh has done etc) then free choice with maths focused tasks until lnch time.

After lunch a 15 min UW or PSE or EAD session followed by free choice in and out until story time and home.

Still feel it's a bit stop-start, but staff avoid disturbing anyone absorbed in their play for a focused task.

We do interrupt more often as we go through the year and introduce focussed reading, writing etc. moving the balance from CI to AD but still have 30- 40% CI in the Summer

Sand and water indoors and out in various guises.

trouble is , what's right for one cohort isn't for another, and some weeks what's right on Monday most certainly isn't on Tuesday, so all we can do is our best! As long as the children are sure we are genuinely interested in them it seems OK.

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sorry, forgot to say - we use 'letters and sounds' as a guide - 10 mins whole class session followed by adult-led differentiated groups each day.

we teach letter formation alongside introducing each sound, sometimes in books, more usually with chalks, cornflour and water, sand trays etc this time of year while we get pencil grip comfortable and effective.

We've banned worksheets, and pretty much banned use of the photocopier for things we provide for children to use in either adult-led or child-chosen activities.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Mavis the fairy we do have an outdoor area which the children access for most if the day I'm not sure why we need playtime?

If the outside area is small then it is sometimes good to use the playtime as space to run and be free but you usually have to share that time with other year groups. I schedule in a weekly/twice weekly slot where we go on the grassy area which has climbing equipment and lots of space. we then get time to observe gross motor skills. We like to do this on a Friday so one of us can stay behind and prepare/replenish resources. x

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