Welcome to Oak Class!
‘In the Moment’ approach to Early Years and Year 1 at St Mary’s Bentworth
At St Mary’s Bentworth, we put the child at the centre of everything we do and we understand that play-based learning is the key to successful, happy, confident and resilient learners of the future.
Why did we choose this approach for Oak Class?
“Babies and young children are experiencing and learning in the here and now, not storing up their questions until tomorrow or next week. It is in that moment of curiosity, puzzlement, effort or interest – the ‘teachable moment’ – that the skilful adult makes a difference. By using this cycle on a moment-by-moment basis, the adult will be always alert to individual children (observation), always thinking about what it tells us about the child’s thinking (assessment), and always ready to respond by using appropriate strategies at the right moment to support children’s well-being and learning (planning for the next moment).”
Taken from National Strategies document ‘Learning, Playing and Interacting’
When children show high levels of involvement, that is when there is progress and development occurring – when the brain is at its most active. High level involvement occurs most often when children are able to pursue their own interests in an enabling environment supported by skilled staff.
Taken from ‘Reception Year in Action’ by Anna Ephgrave
What does this look like in Oak Class?
The adults goes to the child, the child is not called to come to the adult. This ensures the child is learning through their own choice of activity, with the adult taking the next steps in their learning to them. Children become deeply engaged in activities if they are playing and selecting activities for themselves.
A cycle of observation, assessment, planning (teaching next steps ‘in the moment’), observation. This cycle harnesses moments of curiosity, puzzlement, interest and effort – a ‘teachable’ moment for practitioners to seize and make a difference.
The role of the adult is to observe and wait for the moment that will make a difference. The skilled practitioner uses that moment to teach the next step, as appropriate for the child.
The role of the adult is vital. Adults are there to facilitate learning through observations and interactions. They will enhance, support and extend learning at an appropriate level for the individual.
The adults will highlight on the learning journey when they have supported by ‘modelling, instructing, modelling language, showing, explaining, demonstrating, exploring ideas, encouraging, pondering, recalling, providing a narrative for what they are doing, facilitating, setting challenges, suggesting’