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Seathorne
Primary Academy

Our Reception Unit

Welcome to the Reception at Seathorne Primary Academy!

Our Reception Unit comprises two form classes - Honeybees and Hedgehogs. Here you will find lots of supportive information to aid your child's transition to our school.

In the Early Years, we pride ourselves on forming excellent relationships with our pupils and families to provide the very best foundation for learning for our children.

If your child is due to start in September 2023, they will start full time from the 4th of September. Below is a short video with more details about what to expect...

Meet the team:

Mr Richard Dennis - Early Years Leader and Reception Teacher

Miss Savannah Lunn - Reception Teacher 

Mrs Lisa Beardsall - Early Years Practitioner

Mrs Michelle Smith - Early Years Administration Support

Children also benefit from interactions with the wider staff across the school including SEND support, Family Welfare and Inclusion and Sports Coaching.

If you are interested in joining us in September 2024, we are having an open evening on Thursday 9th November.

Below are some Parents' frequently asked questions:

1. Will we be able to visit the school?

Yes - please make an appointment through our School office. Mrs Smith or Mrs Yates will arrange one with you.

2. What uniform is needed for my child?

Please click the link to visit the Uniform page for full information. You can also use the 'Parents' tab at the top of this page to navigate lots of other useful information. 

3. How can I prepare my child for starting school?

We will try to ensure starting school is not a scary experience for your child, but of course, both of you may be anxious about this. Our main focus in Reception is on the PRIME AREAS, and the most important skills your child will need are:

- Communicating: Can your child express themselves? Can they ask for help? Can other people understand what they say? Can they follow simple instructions? e.g. Put your coat on first, then put your bag on.

- Resilience: Will your child try new things? Are they used to having a little bit of a struggle e.g. getting dressed? AND, do they have the opportunity to figure it out for themselves? (Of course, offer a little help if they ask for it but always allow a little extra time for your child to 'have a go' on their own without the stress of being late).

- Independence: Does your child dress, use a toilet and feed themselves? Do they wash their own hands and brush their own teeth? Do they tidy away their toys (most of the time)? 

Remember, children will only do well at school if they are happy, feel loved and have their basic needs such as safety, food, warmth and sleep met.

We will support you in every way that we can, and look forward to being a part of your child's learning journey. 

***You should also apply for the free school meals. It is important that all families apply whether they feel they are eligible or not. We receive extra funding on top of the free school meals which is used to support the children through resources, staffing, enrichment activities etc. Use the information here.***

5. What safeguarding procedures are in place during the day?

All our gates are locked after the children have arrived at School. Late arrivals need to enter via the school main office. Gates are re-opened/re-locked only when sessions/school end. Access on to school site during the day is through the office, where a secure entry system is in place.

We will only ever release your child to an adult named on their admission form. In the event you need to change who will collect your child, we use a password system and will release to another adult if the password is known and prior notification given (in person or over the phone). Children must always be collected by someone aged 16 yrs+.

6. If my child stays all day, what do we do for lunch?

We offer 2 options, you can either provide a packed lunch and drink or avail of a hot school meal. Some families may be eligible for the Early Years free school meals. Other children can pay for this option through the school office. There are 2 or 3 choices of meal daily. A member of the EYFS team stays with the children at all times to model good eating and behaviour. We have our own lunchtime support assistants too. We are used to managing food allergies and intolerances. 

In Reception all children are eligible for a universal free school meal, or you may provide a packed lunch.

7. Do I need to provide snacks for during the day?

No - we provide fruit and vegetable snacks for breaks. You can apply for free milk too. Water is available all day for the children. We encourage independence, they pour and select their own snacks and tidy up afterwards. (At present, children will need to provide their own water bottles)

8. I think my child might need more support. How can you help?

We have a qualified Special Educational Needs lead in school, who works closely with us to support all of our children's needs. Our staff are particularly experienced in supporting speech and language difficulties and behaviour. We always work closely with families and a support plan may be formed to work towards small step targets to aid your child's development.

9. How do I keep informed about my child's progress?

Once your child has settled into school, we arrange a focus child meeting with you. There we will discuss your hope and concerns and agree a focus for that week's observations. At the end of the week, we will have another short meeting to talk about what was observed and suggest next steps for your child.

We also share pictures and videos throughout the week on Tapestry and you can add your own too! We comment and feedback on all observations!

Each term you will receive a newsletter highlighting some of the amazing learning that has occured that term and ways you can support at home. 

We hold two formal parents evenings a year in October and March, and you will be invited to book an appointment. We also provide a written report at the end of the summer term. However, we pride ourselves on building excellent relationships with our families so that if you ever need to talk to us, you can!

10. What do I need to provide my child with for a day at School?

We LOVE being outside in all weathers! Please provide wellies, waterproof coat and if possible, a rain suit or waterproof trousers. We run forest school sessions on site in our own woodland area each week, come rain or shine. Getting muddy is an essential part of growing up, and we embrace it!

They will also need a bag with change of pants/knickers, socks/tights, skirt/dress/trousers in case of toilet accidents or a thorough soaking in the rain. Please note that welfare is paramount, we don't keep them out if they're wet through or cold.

Water bottle, bag, PE kit

11. How can I join in at School?

We love going on trips, and invite designated parents to join us on those. We also have a termly stay and pay session, where you are invited to come along and join in with us!

Every term, we also hold a parents workshop, which will support you with understanding language development, phonics, early reading and early maths development.

*NEW for 2023* - Our PTA wil be running fortnightly coffee mornings where you can come along and meet with other parents. 

8. Can my child attend school clubs?

There are often clubs available for EYFS pupils. Letters are sent home termly informing you of what is available. These may a lunchtime club or after school. 

9. My child has some toileting issues, will they be supported?

100% yes! We don't turn anyone away, in fact the opposite. We fully support families with your toilet training. Our Early Years facilities are the appropriate size for small children and our staff sensitively support children with their needs, including changing if required. 

10. When will my children bring homework and reading books home?

In the first week, we will send home a reading record and a 'library book'. The library book is a sharing book for you to share with your child; they will not be able to read this book independently. Once your child starts phonics, we will send home an appropriate book for them to practise their reading at home with you every evening. 

We will also send home a 'rainbow writing' sheet for your child to practise letter formation if they want to and a sticker will be sent home to share with you the letter and sound they have been learning in phonics.