Early Years


The Early Years Foundation Stage begins in Reception, with children aged between 3 and 5 years. The Early Years programme lays the foundation for every child to play an active part in their own learning, building life skills and learning tools through creative activities in a secure and nurturing environment, ensuring that the first experiences of school are stimulating, positive and paced according to the developmental needs of the individual. Parents and carers are active participants in the child’s first steps in formal education.

We follow the National Early Years Curriculum which is divided into 7 areas of learning:

  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development
  • Personal, Social and Emotional
  • Literacy
  • Maths
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

At ISCAT children play, explore and take an active role in their learning. They benefit from a wonderful outdoor learning environment which provides an extensive range of learning opportunities. This continuous provision allows learning to take place throughout the day in a playful environment which respects the pace and interests of each child. Through encouraging independence, children demonstrate their creative and critical thinking and raise their own questions to extend their learning. Our teachers carefully plan the curriculum based around student needs and interests, providing the appropriate challenge at all times. Our children take part in Forest School sessions once per week in our local forest area, exposing them to the many benefits of learning in a natural environment. The sessions encourage exploration, understanding and respect for each other as well as our nature. They are led by the children’s interests and follow the Forest School ethos.