First Steps and Foundation

First Steps and Foundation (age up to11)

The First Steps and Foundation Pathway (Intent)

This pathway is designed to meet the needs of pupils joining the school between the ages of 2 and 11 years who face moderate and severe barriers to learning. The pupils follow an adapted Early Years curriculum that offers breadth of experience and learning through play and semi-structured activities. It offers an enabling and stimulating environment in which pupils can develop awareness of themselves, others and the world around them and ready themselves for more structured, adult-led learning experiences.

Teaching aims to develop pupils’ capacities in four key areas:

  • Social and Emotional Development
  • Communication
  • Physical Development and Sensory Integration
  • Cognition and Learning

Teachers plan their learning activities with reference to the following key outcomes:

  • Pupils will engage in and begin to initiate social interaction including imaginary play
  • Pupils will begin to recognise and convey their own feelings, wants and needs and show awareness of the feelings of others
  • Pupils will learn to understand and follow simple instructions
  • Pupils will communicate intentionally by using gestures, sounds and an increasing range of words
  • Pupils will learn to become increasingly and independently mobile linking movements with control
  • Pupils will actively engage in learning opportunities that support a healthy body and mind
  • Pupils will move towards independence in some aspects of self-care
  • Pupils will develop working memory and the ability to problem solve within familiar contexts including those that require the use of early mathematical concepts
  • Pupils will learn to follow sequences and routines with minimal prompting
  • Pupils will learn that sounds are represented as letters and begin to read and write phonemes
  • Pupils will learn to read and ‘write’/ construct sentences by linking words/symbols/pictures
  • Pupils will experience, contribute to, and participate in, cultural and community events through the arts and religious festivals
  • Pupils will develop an appreciation and understanding of the natural world through outdoor learning experiences

Assessment (impact)

Our pupils’ learning is captured and reviewed using the Interactive Learning Diary (ILD). Through the ILD we are able to record progress towards: key outcomes for the pathway; pupils’ personal goals; EHCP outcomes. Pupil Progress Meetings are held three times a year between the class teacher and the Assistant Head for the curriculum pathway. These meetings ensure that our judgments are accurate and that we are maximising opportunities for our pupils to learn and progress. Attendance data, behaviour data, and sensory profiling information may contribute towards a measure of our pupils’ health and wellbeing. Where appropriate, SaLT, OT and Physiotherapy reports will also be referred to, in order to gain a holistic picture of each pupil’s progress.