Curriculum – Reception

At Holme Valley we understand that the Early Years are the most important of a child’s life and we aim to work closely with families to ensure that all children have a smooth transition to school, and the best start to their education.

Our Reception classrooms and our outdoor area provide a rich, dynamic and welcome environment for the children to learn and explore in.

An important part of the EYFS is to support children in becoming active learners; continuous provision in our indoor and outdoor areas offers the children a constant environment that is safe for them to explore whilst challenging their learning. Continuous provision also allows children to learn through a balance of independent child initiated play and more structured adult led activities.

We value the importance of outdoor learning and we ensure that the children get frequent and regular opportunities to explore and learn in the outdoor environment.

The topics that we cover in reception link to key skills which they need to develop and they reflect the children’s interests or curiosity. This ensures that we get maximum engagement for all children as we believe that high-level attainment comes from high-level engagement.


The children in reception are taught phonics every day. We use the Jolly Phonics programme in as it is a fun and interactive way for children to learn the early skills of reading and writing.

Reception Curriculum

During their time in reception, the children learn skills, acquire knowledge and demonstrate their understanding through seven areas of learning.

There are three prime areas of learning;

  • Communication and Language – This includes speaking, understanding and listening and attention.
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development – This includes managing feelings and behaviour, making relationships and self-confidence and self-awareness.
  • Physical Development – This includes health and self-care and moving and handling.

And four specific areas of learning;

  • Literacy – This includes reading and writing.
  • Mathematics – This includes number and shape, space and measure.
  • Understanding the World – This includes technology, the world and people and communities.
  • Exploring using Media and Materials – This includes exploring using media and materials and being imaginative.

Assessment is mainly done through observation of children’s independent learning and during adult led activities. Parents are kept informed of progress throughout the year.

Reception Routines

Books are changed twice a week (usually on a Monday and Thursday)

Children have an indoor and outdoor PE session each week and should have their PE kit in school every day in case the days are changed.

Home Learning

Children are expected to read at least 4 times a week and record these reads in their reading diary.

Jolly phonics sound sheets will be sent home for you to support your child with learning phonics. Keywords will also be sent home on flashcards.

A very simple homework task will be set each Thursday and must be handed in by the following Monday. This task will usually relate to the topic that we have been covering in class.