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Reception Curriculum

Please take a look at our Reception half-termly overviews (below) to see a snapshot of what children are learning in each subject. If you would like to see our 'Whole School Curriculum Overview', click here. If you would like more information about our curriculum or require a paper copy, get in touch via our contacts page

Art: Across the year children in Reception are given opportunities to explore the mediums of Drawing/Painting/Printing/ Collage/Sculpture/Textiles. Reception class also participate in the six-week Whole School Art Project which takes place in Spring 2 each year.

Autumn 1


Getting started: Nursery Rhymes
Enjoy rhyming activities.  Show awareness of rhyme and alliteration. Recognise rhythm in spoken words. Listen and join in with poems and stories. 

Poetry: 'Give yourself a hug' by Grace Nichols
Continue a rhyming string. Show awareness of rhyme and alliteration. Hear and say the initial sound in words. Give meaning to marks they make as they draw. 

Rhyme play: ‘Oi Frog!’ by Kes GreyShows awareness of rhyme and enjoys rhyme play


Getting changed - On the move
How my body changes - Senses


What is the same?  What is different? Grouping and sorting.

Counting and recognising numerals.

Comparing size, weight and volume.


What technology do we have at home and school and what is it used for?

Let's learny about wheels, axels and levers and joints that can move.


New beginnings

All about me – celebrations and birthdays.

Family Diversity- Who cares for me?
All sorts of families

Science Focus


Can we fix it?

Key questions for science

Can you describe materials using your senses?  Can you explain what happens to certain materials when they are heated, e.g. bread, ice, chocolate? Can you explain what happens to certain materials when they are cooled, e.g. jelly, heated chocolate?



What makes everyone unique and precious?

Autumn 2


  • representing 1, 2, 3,4,5
  • composition of 1, 2, 3, 
  • comparing 1,2, 3, 
  • one more and one less
  • circles, triangles and squares
  • spatial awareness
  • combining shapes




Can you?  

My Body - Parts of the Body

Could you?
Create a personal timeline to show the changes in you and your family from being a baby until now?


Key questions for history
How have you changed?
What other changes have there been in your family?


RSE: Naming body parts, Growing and caring for ourselves

Growing friendships skills & Anti Bullying Week

What is our Christmas play about?



Poetry: ‘Hug’ by Jez Alborough
Hear and say the initial sound in words. Begin to segment the sounds in simple words and blend them together. Link sounds to letters, naming and sounding the letters of the alphabet. Begin to read words using phase 2 phonemes. 

Describe main story settings, events and characters. Enjoy an increasing range of books. Show a preference for a dominant hand. Begin to use anticlockwise movement and retrace vertical lines. Begins to form recognisable letters. Use a pencil and hold it effectively to form letters.

Performance: Christmas Play - become more confident to speak in a familiar group and talk about ideas.


Spring 1


  • Introducing zero
  • comparing numbers to 5 
  • composition of 4 and 5 
  • comparing mass and capacity
  • representing 6, 7 and 8
  • making pairs
  • combining two groups
  • measuring length, height and time



Understanding the World

Talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members
Understand growth  from baby to adult.
Know about similarities and differences  between types of animals.
Recognise that a range of technology is used in places such as homes and schools


Fiction: 'Owl Babies' by Martin Waddell 
Use phonic knowledge to write words in ways which match their spoken sounds. Write some irregular common words. Write short sentences in meaningful contexts. 

Non-fiction: (linked to science) ‘Just Ducks’ by Nicola Davies 
Know that information can be retrieved from books and computers. Write own name and other things such as labels, captions.

Art and Design

Structures - about the working characteristics of materials (e.g. folding paper to make it stiffer, plaiting yarn to make it stronger)- Bridge building /shelters


Mental health & wellbeing: naming feelings 

Gender &lunchboxes

How can we help each other?

Special places

Key questions for sceince focus:

Who has feathers? Who has fur?

What is a mammal?
Waht is a bird?
What features do they share?
What is different about them?

Our Bodies
Our Senses



Ball skills

Spring 2


  • representing 9 and 10
  • comparing numbers to 10
  • bonds to 10
  • 3D shape
  • pattern


What can we put in an Easter garden?

Good to be Me: similarities & differences -food 

Global citizenship 



Fiction: ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ by Michael Rosen  
Use vocabulary influenced by books.

Non-fiction: ‘Learn About Bears’ by Goss Castle
Link sounds to letters, naming and sounding the letters of the alphabet.

Poetry: ‘Don’t Put Mustard in the Custard’ by Michael Rosen
Build confidence to speak in a familiar group and talk about ideas.


Revision of phase 2 and phase 3 phonics. 
Learning phase 3 tricky words. 

Art and Design

Every year we join the rest of the school in a fantastic 6 week art project!

Our art project changes every year as the whole school focuses on a small group of artists and we learn new skills.



Ball skills

Summer 1


  • building numbers beyond 10
  • counting patterns beyond 10
  • how many is 100?
  • spatial reasoning
  • adding more
  • taking away
  • triangles and stars


I can log on to the school computer and follow a simple programme.


Special places and people.

Loss: coping with changes
Feeling Good Feeling Safe: Protective behaviours – keeping safe.



Fiction: ‘Rosie’s Walk’ by Pat Hutchins
Read and understand simple sentences. Use phonic knowledge to decode regular words and read them aloud accurately. Read some common irregular words. 

Non-fiction: recounts about class trip to Blatchington Windmill
Use phonic knowledge to write words in ways which match spoken sounds.
Write some irregular common words.


Fun and games – developing partner work.

Key questions for science

How does your garden grow?

What will your plant need to grow?
How will you look after your plant?
What happens under the soil?
What will you notice as your plant grows?

Could you grow a plant from a seed?


Summer 2


  • doubling
  • sharing and grouping 
  • even and odd
  • spatial reasoning


Changes; moving on transtion to Y1

Keeping Healthy & Safe: hand washing and asking for help


Fiction: ‘The Gruffalo’ by Julia Donaldson
Write simple sentences which can be read by themselves and others. 

Poetry:  ‘HELP!’ by  Michael Rosen
Continue a rhyming string. Write rhymes with phase 3 phonemes and phase 4 consonant clusters.



How do we care for our wonderful world?


Working together


Local trip – where will we go and how will we get there?

Around our school. 

Cooking and Nutrition

Prepare simple dishes using the principles of healthy eating-

Pizza / bread making –clay oven

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