Ages: 3.5 - 4.5 years (pre-school)
Children move into the Zebra room the September before they start school the following year. The Zebra room is a purpose-built qualified teacher led room for children 3.5 years to 4.5 years.
Within the Zebra room we offer adult led activities and respond to child-initiated activities to support the children’s development in line with the Early Years Foundation Stage (2021). This is influenced by observing and interacting with children as they pursue their own interests through in the moment planning made throughout the week and by information provided by the parents through informal chats during pick up or drop off times.
Children at this age can quickly develop physical, emotional and learning needs.
The Zebra room gives a focus to the types of activities that children will experience once in reception at school, and ultimately provides an easier and comfortable transition to big school.
During the day, Zebras have access to a rich environment within several differing areas of the room. We provide a continuous provision of sand, water, messy play, block play and also a quiet area for reading stories and relaxing and a home corner. All of our resources and activity areas are appropriate for the age group and designed to promote and stimulate your child’s development, learning and independence.
Our Zebra children are always on the go and really benefit from large and small physical play. We offer free flow play from the room to the garden on a daily basis.
At Scallywags we respect and value the diversity of all children and the Zebra room really allows children to establish their own sense of identity, to grow in confidence and independence and become a responsible member of our school community.
The Zebra room thrives on daily routines. This is to help children feel safe and secure and prepare them for a more formal education that school offers. Routine is a great way to teach children healthy habits and when children know what to expect each day, they are more likely to be calm and settled and ultimately their independence will develop when accessing activities meaning they are confident independent learners.
To support children’s communication & language development we provide them with group sessions on a daily basis. For children who need extra support with their language, we have a dedicated communication and language lead practitioner who can spend targeted one to one support time. However independent and active our Zebras are, they will sometimes need a rest or just a cuddle, our practitioners are always on hand to provide this and we have a sleep area for this group of children.
We work closely with other local pre-schools / nurseries in the area and encourage parents to pass our monthly diary which tracks progress and targets to the other settings. This then allows us to all work collaboratively on your child’s development.
The children in this group have access to water throughout the day and eat lunch in the room with their peers and teachers. They also have a snack table offering fruit and other healthy options to the children at set times during the day.
Forest Field Play
Children in the pre-school / Zebra room get to take part in this fun activity. The philosophy of Forest Field Play is to encourage and inspire children through positive outdoor experiences giving each child an opportunity to develop skills such as self-awareness, motivation, empathy, good social communication skills, independence, a positive mental attitude, self-esteem and confidence.
A typical day in Zebras
The key areas worked on are:
Social skills: being able to work in small groups and share adult’s attention
Literacy skills: letter sounds and letter formation
Numeracy skills: number recognition and using number practically and mentally
Physical development: being able to recognise how the body works and keeping healthy
Creative Development: being provided with the opportunities to explore different textures and properties
Knowledge and understanding on the world: being provided with the opportunities to recognise what is going on around them.
Going to school
Within the Zebra room we follow the same curriculum that will be used in your child’s first year at school. This enables staff to work with children on an individual basis and provide them with opportunities to take their learning as far as they wish and further develop their interests in different areas.
Once your child has been allocated a school place, we will start transitions with your child’s allocated school. Your child’s key person and the nursery teacher will talk to allocated school about your child and pass on relevant development information.
School teachers will also be invited to visit children at nursery, and we will also endeavour to take children for visits to school.
Zebras daily routine 2021