We embarked on a ‘talk for writing’ project across our curriculum in October 2015.
Talk for writing is a method already used in most of our local primary schools and it is said to be key in raising attainment.
Talk for writing was developed by Pie Corbett and is powerful because it is based on the principles of how children learn.
Talk for writing enables children to imitate the key language they need for a particular topic based on a story.
Through fun activities the children rehearse the tune of the language they need, it helps children to understand that every story has a framework, a beginning, a build up, a problem, a resolution and an end. Primary schools hope that by the end of Key Stage 1, children will know 30 traditional stories really well.
We believe that we are the first nursery to try this approach. We hope that by the time our children start school, some of these stories will be firmly embedded.
Alfred the mouse goes to school.
Alfred may only be a small white mouse, but he can play a big part in supporting your child as they begin their transition to school.
Starting school understandably produces a range of emotions and questions for both your child and you as parents; this is a big step in a small person’s life. The ‘Alfred the mouse’ innovation has been created in association with the Taunton Early Years Cluster Group and Take Art, with the aim to help with the emotions and questions that arise. The focus of the innovation is a website accessible by all, featuring pictures and 3D panoramic views of 31 schools within Taunton; the images include pictures of reception classes, play areas, amenities and activities. Children can view the website within their settings and at home with you and begin to become familiar with a school environment, for some they may be able to view the school they will be attending.
On viewing the site you will see that Alfred is featured in each picture; all participating schools and Early Years settings have been provided with their own Alfred to aid making connections between the two settings and to act as a focal point from which discussions reflecting Alfred’s adventures as he visits schools, can take place; Where has Alfred been? What did he do? Was it exciting? How did he feel? Did he make friends? Using Alfred as a tool to talk about such questions will aid in giving your child an understanding of the adventure they are soon to partake in and help them express their feelings with regards to this new venture and therefore aid in smooth transition to school as a confident individual.
Alfred the mouse is just one aspect of preparing your child for transition to school, as a setting we offer a variety of experiences that ensure that the children will be ready for their next step; creating foundations from which they will grow, giving them familiarity with innovations of learning that are utilised in schools and nurturing their self confidence, self esteem and social communication and interaction skills ready for a new environment. Alfred the mouse goes to school website: www.alfredthemouse.co.uk