Jump to content
About Us

Medium Term Planning

Guest rebeccasmith

Recommended Posts

Guest rebeccasmith

I am just about to undergo the huge task of dividing the objetives for the Curriculum Guidance for the Foundation Stage, National Numeracy Strategy and National Literacy Strategy up across the year, and wondered if anyone has already done this or can advise me.


I want my medium term plans to show what objectives I will be covering that term and how the documents link. I think it is important that objectives are repeted frequently over the year and show differentiation, however I need to be ensuring I am covering the whole curriculum effectively.


Dividing it up will give me even coverage throughout the year and increase the focuss of my lessons.


I know of some schools who are going through this process and I hope to 'steal' some of their ideas - but any further ideas would be great.


As the only Reception teacher in my school this is quite a task and I would welcome any advice.


Many thanks



Teignmouth, Devon

Link to comment
Share on other sites

HI Rebecca,

this is an area that I have been working on but I am building it up as I go.

My planning sheet is in the document section.


I think you need to have an idea of the topics that you want to cover and then make sure that over the year you are meeting all Goals. Some are progressive, aren't they?

At least that is my approach.


NNS matches directly to Goals, using exactly the same language and I use the medium term planners from it to ensure progression and coverage of number Goals but block the shape, space & measures aspects as this I find more meaningful.


NLS language is not so user friendly but Goals can be matched to NLS objectives (or should that be the other way round?) and that process has made the strategy more meaningful. My Lea had already split the NLS objectives into terms so that was alot easier than it might have been.


Have you looked at hamiltontrust.org.uk? They have planning for lit & num., although they are not manageable as a straight lift for my children. Literacymatters. co.uk has also got some good ideas.


Keep asking questions on this one, as you are right, its not easy on your own. We're all gaining from one anothers knowledge and expertise.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi there Rebecca. I was just wondering if you are trying to juggle Foundation Curric with NLS and NNS all at the same time.

Susan what about you?

We dont use the NLS or NNS at all in reception until the very last half term, so I was wondering if you felt it was necessary. We are also looking to not using them in year 1 next year either, but this is a slightly braver step.

Link to comment
Share on other sites



I use ELGs for my planning but have matched NLS objectives to ELGs. this enables me to satisfy myself that I am planning from it and to see its relevance.


The NLS is not really appropriate to my children for the direct planning as suggested by the sites I mentioned but I don't think it hurts to be aware of what is out there as a resource. We are experimenting with drawing some of the ideas from hamilton trust to ensure that we are stretching our children enough but we are not worksheet mad and will mix and match. Last week for example we tired the hamilton trust plans for T1,wk1. Overall we had some good lessons by adapting the published plan. This week has been on hold due to Eid but next week we will try wk2 as it is about rhymes using Rainbow Fish and we need to cover rhyming.

I have not successfully used or worked out how to use the plans from NLS on the Standards site.

Messages are that we should be using "developing early writing" & PIPS extensively.


NNS objectives are of course ELGs. We try to have an oral session everyday following the number strands from the medium term plans, but other content we also mix and match and try to block as the dipping in & out as NNS plans is not appropriate.


I do not teach "hours" and persuaded my head last year that it was not appropriate at any stage during the year. We were at a point where we could continue to teach content or we could teach a technique.

We made our yr1s much less formal for the start of the year too and children have really benefitted so I'm hoping that will be maintained.


Does that clarify or confuse or repeat!!



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for that, yes it does clarify. How do you get on with Hamilton. We tried for a time at my last school where I was maths coordinator but I have to admit I really wasnt that impressed. I was happy to use some of the ideas, but felt some activities were not appropriate (colouring squares make me cringe) and they miss out the vocabulary (which was a major issue for us). In the end, we did not adopt it formally, as I also felt that it was sometimes used in the wrong way (ie printed off on a sunday night and that was 'the planning'. I dont think it was a popular decision but I did honestly feel that the quality of maths teaching in the school was better when teachers thought more about what they were doing, using ideas from a variety of sources.

Anyway I digress. I was just wondering as I think you intake sounds very similar to ours.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's very interesting to read how different people are using the national documents and most heartening to hear that there are other Reception teachers who, like me, have decided against doing the formal structure of the Lit/Num lesson. I use half termly topics and plot my objectives from the documents to show coverage, as well as long term plans for each area of provision. I have not yet completed this administrative task after 6 years, as the topics and the areas develop and change with the children! I feel the Literacy strategy methodology isn't successful in the early years - we've tried guided reading for 3 years and the quality of reading experiences and attainment has gone down. I've gone back to individual reading! How about anyone else?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I thought this thread was very interesting! With regard to implementing the full lit/num 'hour', I didn't do this at all in (Reception) my last school, but at my new school I understand that the expectation is for most of the summer term that I will do it. I'm going to fight against it tooth & nail as I don't think it's appropriate - there's too much sitting and not enough chance for the the children to "talk and do".


When it comes to reading, we hear individual readers throughout the year and begin guided reading after Xmas with the ones who are ready for it. Again, I think that some of this is too soon, as individual readers are expected to progress through Oxford Reading Tree and some are just not ready in September. I would like to have them sharing simple, high quality picture books for a longer period and only starting on the ORT wen they are showing an understanding of print and text in shared reading/small group work in class (so some would start ORT quite quickly). Do you think this is appropriate or am I going too far away from formal learning? I find guided reading a real struggle with all but the readers who have really got the idea already!


Sorry to be rambling on, but I think it's always good to clarify my thinking by writing things, and I'd like to hear other people's opinions very much! :o

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Several posts to respond to & no time tonight but this one I can not postpone.


I really like Guided Reading, find it very successful and the children love it too.

I call what I do "Book skills" but I work with a group of 6 & 1 text, to develop conventions of print.

At the moment, I am working with picture stories, developing left to right directionality & extending vocab by talking about the pictures.

I will extend this with 'stories' next term and start tracking print, lookinf for & using phonic knowledge etc.


We are using Rigby Star.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Susan

I'm interested to know what you consider the successful ingredients for guided reading in Reception are?

I found the ideas underpinning guided reading convincing - the social context for learning and the development of metacognitive skills through the discussion of the reading process, but the social skills needed to engage in this kind of activity in a busy integrated classroom take a considerable time to develop. How do you build it into your daily routines? I found some children opting out of a group session whilst enjoying 1 to 1 sessions. I've gone with what I feel is the most sympathetic to the children, but I'm not rejecting the idea of developing guided reading groups when my children are more confident. More info please!

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Bit brain dead but if I don't reply I might forget so---


We have a dedicated classroom slot for Guided Reading. Replaced the old "silent reading" session that we returned to the classrooms for after lunch pre lit. hr.

KS1 have always found the guided reading/ writing juggle difficult so we took the reading element out of the hour as soon as it was suggested!!

I think guided reading in other classrooms may have moved to the morning as they have amLSAs, but I have kept that element for the start of the afternoon. I continue some of the silent reading idea too as many children enjoy looking at the books but I find very few actually choose to do so!


My children are majority EAL & I am fortunate to have classroom support so I have a group for "Guided reading" and my NNEB has the rest on the carpet where she can interact with stories, book handling skills and vocab extension. How will the children read if they they do not know the english vocab?


I have found it best to group the children according to their confidence levels to start with. Quiet children do not respond in very vocal group but may do so in a quieter group.

I have a large horseshoe shaped table to work at which is ideal for Guided reading activities as by sitting in the middle I can see exactly what they are doing, if they are following etc and reach to help them by pointing to something etc.


My children need a lot of very basic support and we work together.

It can be quite noisy, as the children with me get very excited and the noise on the carpet can get loud as a result but we try to have at least a working noise level and the children always respond well. For their needs, I find this far more satisfactory than individual reading as they can learn from one another and experience success that they might not do on their own!


I see all children in a week. I do not do this every week, sometimes I teach book skills from a big book to the whole class. Later on I teach keywords, starting with those they can blend.


So we have about 30 mins called "Book skills".


Hope that helps.

Any other ideas, anyone?



Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Am a frustrated NQT in my first post. i'm working in a two-class, open-plan classroom with a teacher entering retirement next year and two nursery nurses who have been at the school since the year dot. Thing is, they are resisting 'learning through play' as hard as possible at the minute, saying that it is a phase that has gone before and as long as the children are learning, then their way can't be bad - plus they got a good OFSTED three years ago.


I'm not against their routine at all. It's just, it's not a year one class. The children have been doing a lit and num hour since September - not the full hour, but it has a carpet session and then table work. The children have lovely books for both, which they work in (one entry per week).


The work we do at the table is creative. We don't use worksheets or anything like that. Basically, it is a focused activity - but the whole class has their own focused activity at their own tables (bearing in mind there are sixty children in the big room). My issue is the timetable itself. I find it so rigid that the creativity I felt I had at the beginning of the year is slowly but surely being rubbed out of me. The routine is what seems to be unchangeable. They've been doing it this way for so long that they are resisting change.


How are you all managing the now infamous 'observations as an assessment tool', while at the same time gathering all your other evidence? The people I work with have the argument that these assessment tools take away the teaching - which is why they resist the urge to simply observe the children play when they can be sat down being taught how to do something.


Guess am typing away wanting a little support that my views aren't wrong!


Thanks for reading!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi ther Sugarbabes, and welcome to the forum.

Please dont despair, ther are lots of people here who are in similar situations to you and we all try to support each other. You are not wrong, and have the faith in yourself that you are not. I presume that you teach in reception from the description you gave?


I have also worked in the 2 class unit with 60 children with the 'teacher from hell' who blocked everything I did even thoigh my instincts told nme that I wasnt loopy. I only managed the year before I left whcih brought a sigh of relief from all of us i think.

Who is you mentor and are they supportive of you? Do you have a FS coordinator who is not in the class with you? How much say over planning do you get? So many questions, sorry, it might help us all to help you better.

Do keep visiting us, we're a friendly bunch, and even if we cant wave the magic wand for you, you will at least not feel so alone.

Try to keep smiling :o

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Sugarbabes,

Can only really echo Mundia's thoughts at the moment.


But-- what is happening about profiles and the evidence you'll need for them?

Are the children coping? ie not too naughty or noisy and responding well?


Do you mean this teacher will be retiring at the end of this school year or during the next one. If its the former don't despair, remember what you know is right and try and see if you can work out what your mentor and head think? Deputy?

They really ought to be able to help you, unless of course the other teacher is your mentor?


If you're in an open plan classroom do you team teach too? Do you ever get your children to yourself?

(I've only ever worked on supply in an open plan school and I didn't like it much!)>


Good luck and keep looking in, we all need each other!!



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Sagarbabes -

Mundia and Susan beat me to it, but I just wanted to say welcome as well. And also that if you have time to browse through other conversations you'll find that you're not by any means the only one fighting this particular battle.


Talking the various potential strategies through can really help though, so keep coming back and let us know what's happening :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

sugarbabes poor you. That is a really difficult situation and not an easy one to resolve till the other teacher leaves! Don,t lose faith. I agree with Mundia. There are lots of us confused as to what is best in FS2 these days. How are the children coping with the formality? :) Chris

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Thank you all for your kind words. I'll try to answer a few of your questions. The class teacher is also the Foundation Stage Co-ordinator. My mentor is the deputy head and both are very supportive of me - that's the frustrating bit! They are both very supportive, as are the nursery nurses. The problem I'm having is that their supportiveness is around me fitting into their routines. I often feel that I'm being guided in the routines rather than in the teaching!


The retiring foundation stage co-ordinator has now told me she may not be retiring this time. It was the only thing that me and the other NQT reception teacher were holding out for, in that it would obviously lead the way for a more independent approach to our teaching - rather than the old routines.


Went on a visit to another reception class in another school and realised the grass isn't always greener on the other side. There are huge positives about my class. The children are lovely, I have hardly any behaviour problems, they are very receptive to my enthusiasm (!) and I feel comfortable in my own delivery of the day. I just feel suffocated at times. Am just not sure that this is how I want to continue my career - forever waiting for the 'next' year, or the 'next' term etc to try out my ideas. Am all for waiting for the right time, but am not sure I want to be a teacher who holds out for the 'right' time, all the time. I'd be waiting most of my career away!


Any comments would be helpful!


How are you all coping with the observations as assessments???????? Can you say 'death by paperwork??'


Thanks again.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi everyone,

I've just returned to this topic and am wondering if sugarbabes is ok? Have you found anyone to support you in developing your early years ethos? What about the Early Years team at your LEA? Don't give up, the children need you to win this battle!

All the best, Pau

Link to comment
Share on other sites


  • 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)