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Wolfson Hillel EYFS Intent, Implementation and Impact


We have created a specialised Hillel EYFS curriculum with the support of our very knowledgeable subject leads, to enable children to succeed through cooperative and collaborative learning principles. There is a strong emphasis on the prime areas of learning; Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development and Communication and Language. We work in close partnership with parents to ensure each individual reaches their full potential.

At Wolfson Hillel, we place a large emphasis on our Jewish ethos. Our children are very proud of their Jewish identity and heritage. They foster a love of Judaism through daily Jewish Studies lessons, religious assemblies, music lessons and celebrating festivals with the entire school.

In addition, we recognise that language and interactions are of paramount importance. We know that it not only improves academic outcomes, but also is a life skill to ensure success beyond school and for their futures. Oracy develops children’s thinking and understanding, which in turn promotes self-confidence, resilience and empathy which supports the child’s well-being. Our enabling environment is warm; skilful adult interactions support the children as they begin to link learning to their play and exploration right from the start. We believe that high-level engagement ensures high-level attainment. We therefore provide an engaging curriculum that maximises opportunities for meaningful cross-curricular links and learning experiences, as well as promoting the unique child by offering extended periods of play.

By the end of Reception, our intent is for our children to receive a breadth of knowledge across the whole EYFS curriculum enabling them to be individuals who are confident, resilient, have a ‘can do’ attitude and feel safe to learn to achieve their full potential. Our aim is also for each child to make better than good progress from their starting points enabling them to have a smooth transition into KS1 as well-rounded children who are ‘Key Stage 1 ready’.







Our unique three-teacher model benefits each child, enabling them to be taught daily synthetic phonics and maths in smaller groups of 20 children in Reception. In Nursery, the children benefit from smaller key worker groups as well as specialist JS and music teachers too. Wolfson Hillel’s EYFS prides itself on having a high staff to child ratio. This enables us to place an emphasis on moving the children’s learning on through purposeful interactions, small group work and 1.1 support to a high standard.

Regular monitoring of teaching and learning by SLT and the EYFS phase leader ensure staff develop good subject knowledge. The EYFS leader ensures staff receive CPD specific to Early Years to develop their practice. For example, we offer CPD on effective observations to understand pupils’ progress, and their key ‘next steps,’ for learning.

Focus children

Each child is a focus child, twice a year in both the Nursery and Reception. During their focus week, they are observed in all areas of learning, this gives the teacher the opportunity to see what the child is showing particular interest in and move their learning on. The parents then have a meeting with the teacher to discuss their child’s progress. During their focus week, the children have the opportunity to bring in a favourite toy and book of their choice, which encourages them to speak in front of their peers about something they are very familiar with.

Teachers regularly upload observations and class sessions onto ‘Tapestry’ enabling an excellent home school link between parents. Teachers in turn love receiving parents ‘wow’ moments that they upload regularly of their children at home. Tapestry allows teachers to observe in a more effective way and give parents a more constant stream of information and communication.

Parents are kept well informed of the curriculum through curriculum evenings, newsletters and regular ‘Stay and play’ sessions.







Our EYFS Curriculum

Maths mastery

In the Nursery, the children are introduced to maths mastery through song, carpet sessions and through continuous provision. This enables them to have a smooth transition into the full program by Reception.

By Reception, the children follow the full ‘Maths Mastery’ scheme in line with the rest of the school that is broken down into units that all teachers are trained in.

Writing & Reading

At Wolfson Hillel, we believe that all our children can become fluent readers and writers. This is why we have chosen to teach reading through Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised, which is a systematic and synthetic phonics programme.

Foundations for phonics in Nursery

  • We provide a balance of child-led and adult-led experiences for all children that meet the curriculum expectations for ‘Communication and language’ and ‘Literacy’. These include:
    • sharing high-quality stories and poems
    • learning a range of nursery rhymes and action rhymes
    • activities that develop focused listening and attention, including oral blending
    • attention to high-quality language.
  • We ensure Nursery children are well prepared to begin learning grapheme-phoneme correspondences (GPCs) and blending in Reception.


Wider Curriculum

Our wider curriculum is taught through the other areas of learning areas. Our EYFS staff have a good understanding of how the ELG’s feed into the National Curriculum through our planning and CPD opportunities. In reverse, colleagues throughout the school are also aware of the EYFS curriculum that link to each foundation subject and the progression of the subject. Exciting, purposeful and contextual activities are planned to build on children’s natural curiosity. For example, building a boat enables them to think like a ‘Scientist’ and ‘Engineer’ as they explore a range of materials and test out their own ideas.



Jewish Studies

In the Nursery, we have a fully integrated nursery with JS & Secular learning e.g the festival Purim:

  • Maths with crowns and counting, shapes to create castle with different shapes for building materials
  • EAD – acting out the story covers literacy
  • L – writing out their own megillah – introducing Hebrew letters also
  • PD – making paper hamantaschen

These show examples of one of the Jewish festivals that we celebrate. When it is not a Jewish festival, then we aim to link the topic into a Jewish area, for instance, The Rainbow Fish which teaches about sharing and being kind to others.

Alongside this, we follow the WHPS JS curriculum covering the Jewish ways of living and Tefillah.

In Reception, children have one lesson a day of JS throughout the week in which they will be learning the Aleph bet (Hebrew alphabet), Jewish way of life and the weekly Parasha. This is taught in a specialised setting but the Jewish ethos is also carried into the main classroom as well.

Every week during Havdallah and Kabbalat Shabbat assemblies, parents are welcome in to see their child on the Shabbat table. Parents are also welcomed into school for special events, such as Chanukah and Pesach to join in activities with the children and see the environment that their child learn in.                                                                                                                  

EYFS Interventions

At Wolfson Hillel, we have skilled staff who run individualised interventions. These are integrated into the school day to ensure all children can ‘keep up’ and are either run as groups or 1.1 to help to close any gaps.  Interventions take place inside and outside the classroom and cover a wide range of skills - gross motor, fine motor, social skills and speech and language skills. We have a wide range of resources to help engage pupils and broaden their understanding. This also helps our children to be prepared for the transition to KS1 by introducing resources that will become familiar (number lines, dice).



SEND in the EYFS

At Wolfson Hillel, ensuring we have highly skilled staff in order to best support the children. Therefore, all staff attend relevant training sessions and continue this in the form of school 1:1 interventions. Regular meetings are held by the school’s SENCO to ensure all actions are effective. Children’s targets are displayed for all staff to access and move their individualised learning forward quickly and effectively through play-based learning. 

We strongly believe in a child-centred approach that helps children of all backgrounds and abilities to learn at their own pace. All children are included in main classroom learning with additional adult support provided if needed. Children with EHCP's alongside those who may need it, will have bespoke plans created by staff and parents to ensure they are happy, making progress and able to access the curriculum. Within the classroom, the children have visual timetables, sensory toys and a self-regulation board to help the children to regulate their behaviours and have the most successful day.


At Wolfson Hillel, prior to children starting, staff spend time speaking to the child’s parents at a settling in session, previous settings and read previous learning journey’s to gain a deeper understanding of the whole child. During the first half term in Nursery or Reception, all staff use ongoing assessments, observations and interactions with the child to develop a baseline assessment. This identifies each individual’s starting points in all areas so we can plan experiences to ensure progress.

All ongoing observations are used to inform weekly planning and identify children’s next steps. This formative assessment does not involve prolonged periods of time away from the children and excessive paper work. The teachers draw on their knowledge of the child and their own expert professional judgements through discussions with the other staff members.

Impact is also evident through our successful transitions into Year 1. EYFS staff have a good understanding of how ELG’s link to the National Curriculum, and through our extensive planning and delivery across the spectrum of subjects – both core and foundation. Children leave the EYFS as confident, well-rounded, independent learners who foster a love of Judaism and therefore are ‘KS1 ready’.

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