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playing in the reception class

52 replies

adastreet · 19/01/2009 19:59

Hi, I am a reception class teacher and I am seriously worried that many teachers are not teaching our 4 and 5 year olds. Do parents realise that in the current Early Years curriculum guidance there is no recommendation to actually TEACH. we can deliver, and give opportunities but no one is asking us to teach. Do any parents have experience of feeling that their children are not being taught the basic skills?

OP posts:
IdrisTheDragon · 19/01/2009 20:02

I am very happy with how DS is learning at school (he is in reception). His class is a mixed nursery/reception class and they can start going mornings only the term after they are 4 and then go full time the term they are 5.

He is in his fifth term there now and is learning a lot in all senses. He plays a lot, reads, calculates, writes and above all enjoys himself .

peasholme · 19/01/2009 20:03

I think the new EYFS curriculum is great and works brilliantly when properly delivered.
Are you really a Daily Mail journalist?

TheFallenMadonna · 19/01/2009 20:03

God no. I love learning through play.

cazzybabs · 19/01/2009 20:05

i've seen it done well and badly

Maenad · 19/01/2009 20:06

Spot on peasholme, I think.... Welcome adastreet, I see this is your first post...

memoo · 19/01/2009 20:07

adastreet, I am a reception TA and I think your interpretation of the EYFS framework is wrong. It recommends that we teach through play, not that we don't teach.

IdrisTheDragon · 19/01/2009 20:08

Bother, didn't spot the obvious first post there.

But still feel that DS's education so far is great

memoo · 19/01/2009 20:09

And anybody who thinks that 4 and 5 year olds don't learn through play shouldn't be teaching in the foundation stage

schneebly · 19/01/2009 20:13

I am a student teacher and I think play-based learning is THE way to teach 4 year olds. I am glad my DS had 2 years of that before beginning a more formal curriculum. Children in this country enter full time education far earlier than a lot of other places so I am glad that they arent immediately bombarded with traditional 'teaching'.

Hulababy · 19/01/2009 20:13

I have really liked the results I have seen in DD's school that comes from the whole "learn through play". DD's school do do some more structured teaching in reception as well, but not loads. It is primarily play - but with a structure and with loads of learning opportunities thrown in. IMO little children really do learn very well that way.

I do not believe the document states no teaching - it is just the way the teaching takes place is different.

DD is now in Y2 and still gets the chance to do some learn through play activities, and loves it.

schneebly · 19/01/2009 20:14

yes I am a bit that OP is a teacher - JOURNO!

schneebly · 19/01/2009 20:14

or maybe a student...

catMandu · 19/01/2009 20:17

Yeah, right, sure.

IF you are for real, you are talking nonsense. My ds is in year 1, he started in reception knowing few letter sounds and unable to write anything other than his name. He was reading all the reception words by the end of the year and his writing is progressing well.

slayerette · 19/01/2009 20:20

I am more worried, adastreet, by the fact that you are a Reception teacher and yet don't know that you should begin a sentence with a capital letter. Good job no-one is asking you to TEACH, really.

ThingOne · 19/01/2009 21:08

I love the fact that my DS1 is learning through play. It's far more appropriate at his age and he is learning so much. He's also learning to enjoy school and love learning. He's interested and making great progress. The class is very happy and the teacher very talented and dedicated.

I'm delighted at this change in approach for the foundation stage. Our children start full-time school far too young in this country. The emphasis on learning through play, learning to love learning and enjoying school makes it all a lot better.

Fennel · 20/01/2009 10:03

I don't really mind if they only play and learn nothing at all in reception. I suppose I compare what my children do with what our friends' children in other European countries do - and mostly they are just playing at 4 or 5. So it seems quite reasonable to me.

My reception child is having a whale of a time, 2 weeks into it. It's been mostly play so far. I am enjoying seeing her so enthusiastic.

PortAndLemon · 20/01/2009 10:06

I'd prefer it if children didn't start school so early in the first place.

Given that they do, I certainly don't want there to be less play involved than there currently is.

ByThePowerOfGreyskull · 20/01/2009 10:08

if you really are a teacher I am thankful you aren't teaching my child.

lalalonglegs · 20/01/2009 10:40

Well, regardless of whether adasstreet is a teacher or not, I agree with her. I'm glad all your kids are enjoying learning through play but mine is complaining that she isn't learning anything and that the teacher won't let her practice her reading. She likes playing but not all the time. I don't want to hothouse her but I would like it if the teacher recognised there are different levels of ability and attainment within the class and catered for them a bit (btw, my dd is not the only one that is bored and wants a bit more stimulation).

Yurtgirl · 20/01/2009 10:46

My dd is learning through play - I am happy with that

weblette · 20/01/2009 10:54

Learning through play is far and away the best way to give my 4-yr-old ds basic skills. Formalised teaching simply would not work.

Lul - at his school the teachers use whichever part of the curriculum is most appropriate to the child's ability. Some reception children access KS1, some Yr1 children do parts of the EYFS. Works brilliantly.

cory · 20/01/2009 10:59

but lalalonglegs- why can't your dd play for 6 hours and then go home and read all evening? Get her a library card. I was teaching myself foreign languages by the age of 5 and I never found this interfered in the slightest with my enjoyment of play.

Sometimes I think parents see a dichotomy between playing and reading- so if you don't enjoy the one that almost proves how good you are at the other. IME many of the brightest children are brilliant at both.

cory · 20/01/2009 11:01

and don't forget the weekends. School is such a limited part of the week.

FairyMum · 20/01/2009 11:02

No, children in this ocuntry starts school too early and yet don't end up any better educated than children in countries starting them later. On the contrary I would say.

lalalonglegs · 20/01/2009 11:18

She does read when she gets home but she wants the teacher to acknowledge her achievements as well. I suppose the reason she gets a bit fed up is that the classroom is very cluttered so doing the sort of play she enjoys - dressing up and running around - isn't really that practical. I would be quite happy for her to play all day and learn at home if she were thriving on it but she isn't. Incidentally, she would like to be practising the rudiments of the foreign language she knows but, although the school runs a club for this language, she was told she wasn't allowed to join until Yr 4. I do think if I had just left her at her (fantastic) nursery, she would be a lot less frustrated.

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