The Early Years Foundation Stage at Doha British School Wakra consists of a two year programme following the EYFS curriculum of England and Wales. Children are given a range of experiences that work towards them attaining the 17 Early Learning Goals by the time they reach age 5. Young children develop at very different rates and it is not expected that children will attain these goals in chronological order. The Early Years classes are organized so that children are provided with opportunities to achieve these goals. Some activities are planned and delivered as a whole class and other small group, focused activities take place according to the children’s individual needs and abilities.
At Doha British School Wakra we have grouped our 3 Early Years classes according to their age. Teachers work closely with the children to ensure they are providing them with the opportunities they are ready for and help them progress to their next steps. Children will move to Year 1 at the beginning of the academic year in which they become 6 years old. Each child will have a Learning Journey that follows them throughout the EYFS. This details what they are interested in, how they are learning and how we can develop this further.
The Seven Areas of the Learning
There are seven areas of learning and development that shape the curriculum:
- Three prime areas: Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional development.
- Four specific areas: Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design.
1. Communication and Language
We give children opportunities to experience a rich language environment, to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
Children express themselves and communicate through daily routines, imaginative play, drama, dance and movement, and also through other creative activities such as art and music. We encourage children to talk and listen to each other in small groups at snack times, within key group time as well as in front of the class. This helps them to organise, sequence and clarify thinking, ideas, feelings and events.
We offer Arabic lessons to native Arabic speakers and teach Spanish as a second language to all other children. These sessions are led by specialist language teachers who use play, songs and practical activities.For children who are learning English as a second language we will also offer small group language support.
2. Physical Development
We work to develop skills of control, co-ordination, manipulation and movement. It helps children gain confidence in what they can do and enables them to feel the positive benefits of being healthy and active.
We use the hall, soft play room and outdoor areas to develop our gross motor skills and teach a range of skills. We teach children how to use tools like scissors, objects, construction and malleable materials safely and with increasing control. This is important as it also supports the development of our fine motor skills which is closely linked to writing
At DBS Wakra we are also fortunate enough to have a specialist PE teacher who works closely with the class teacher to provide many opportunities for physical development.
3. Personal, Social and Emotional Development
We provide experiences and support children to develop social skills, a positive sense of themselves, and how to manage their feelings. Through role play and stories we initiate discussion and opportunities for the children to understand their emotions and feelings.
We encourage children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. They have access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest together with having the confidence, opportunity, encouragement, support and disposition to use them. We aim to foster a love of language and reading by sharing books and reading to the children as often as we can throughout the session or day.
We have daily phonics sessions where we use a multi-sensory approach following the Letters and Sounds programme.
We provide opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems and to describe shapes, spaces, and measures. This understanding is developed through stories, songs, problem solving, games and imaginative play, so that children can enjoy using and experimenting with numbers.
6. Understanding of the World
This involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
We help children develop skills of observation, predicting, exploring, investigating, interpreting, discussing, decision-making and using tools and materials appropriately. We use the ICT suite to build on skills started in class including exploring environments, mouse control skills and creating pictures on screen.
7. Expressive Arts and Design
We enable children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.