It is widely known that establishing positive relationships are fundamental in order for children to flourish. It is vital that children feel secure and at ease within their learning environments and of course the staff and peers whom they are with.
At Hatherop we are proud of the way we build and maintain bonds with our children. Not only does the creative approach to learning across the Early Years Foundation Stage and Pre Prep enable us to quickly foster positive relationships but also at the core are the school values which fully embrace the adventure of childhood and allow the children to express themselves in many different ways. Our school values are:
A sense of belonging
Hatherop is one big family. Right from the moment, the children enter Little Owls Nursery and the Pre-Prep, they can be assured of a warm and nurturing environment. We pride ourselves in getting to know the children in our care well by spending time with them during settling in/taster sessions prior to starting school, we visit the children in their Transition Class and also invite them into the Stableyard regularly to explore their new area and get to know the staff.
The whole school have so many opportunities to mix with one another and a huge highlight is our school house system. When the children register and join Hatherop, they are allocated a house (Bazley, Fyfe, or Moorhead) and through regular house meetings, the children, young and old work with each other to earn housepoints and take part in inter-house competitions. Through this regular contact, the children quickly feel at ease which instantly instils confidence and a real sense of belonging whilst at the same time equips them with the necessary tools to build and establish solid friendships.
Through small class and group teaching, the children have the opportunity to apply their newfound confidence to enable them to thrive. Staff ratios allow for time to be spent daily with children both individually and in small groups to help bring on their learning and develop their curiosity and to allow their thirst for learning to unravel. Daily teaching of phonics and number work along with our Creative curriculum all help to foster enthusiastic learners. Not only do the children in our care build up relationships with their class teachers but also with specialist subject staff who begin their learning journey with them in our Nursery. From the age of 2, PE and Music are timetabled each week with the addition of French at age 3, and this continues into the stable yard, providing familiar friendly faces and continuity for when they start school.
We are incredibly fortunate to have vast grounds in which the children can fully immerse themselves, including our most recent arrival and of a treehouse! Regular visits to our onsite Forest School, where the children can explore and develop their skills, whether it be whittling sticks or den building with their peers enable the children to communicate in a variety of ways and allow their creative juices to flow!
The relationships built at these early stages really do set up the children with a solid foundation on which to build their learning.