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Reception - Platypups (RNH) & Joeys (RCH)

Platypups are taught by Mrs Norris, with Mrs Stephenson providing cover on Wednesdays.

Joeys are taught by Mrs Hill on Mondays, Tuesdays & Wednesdays and Miss Hall on Thursdays and Fridays.

Mrs Kendrick, Mrs Sharratt, Mrs Watson and Miss Roberts support the children too.

The Reception school day is 9:00am-3:00pm on Mondays-Thursdays and 9:0am-12:15pm (after eating lunch) on Fridays. Please enter and leave through the Brinkhill gate (unless you have a special arrangement with the school due to siblings with the same start and end time), and observe social distancing.

Our Aim

Our aim is to offer your child a stimulating, high quality educational curriculum during their time at school.  Your child will continue to build on the knowledge and skills he or she has already acquired in nursery and at home, or when out and about in the world with you.  We are guided by the principles of The Early Years Foundation Stage approach to learning and by the National Curriculum requirements and aim to achieve these by:

  • Teaching in ways which stimulate and build upon curiosity and children’s interests, enabling learning through practical and planned play activities as well as through structured taught sessions.  The combination of these two approaches is vital as we encourage resilience, self-motivation and independence alongside the introduction of new ideas and skills.
  • Providing a rich variety of new and familiar experiences to extend and consolidate your child’s knowledge and confidence.
  • Using a range of equipment in planned and progressive ways that extend development and help your child to reach their full potential.
  • Encouraging children to consider their own choices and responsibilities in all that they do, building empathy and forethought into their actions.

Contact us

If you have any questions or need to contact us, please email the class address at:


Reception Class Letters & Newsletters

Update 18/9/20

Children have now had their reading books issued and collected for the first time.  Please remember to send your child in with their bookbag on Mondays so that they can get a fresh book and then return the book on Fridays to be collected in for quarantine purposes.  This is the system we will follow every week.  If your child reads every night (Monday-Thursday) they will get a stamp on their reward chart so please note it in their diaries.  Most children have been given diaries if they didn't have one in school and we will catch the last few next week.

Lost property went out this lunchtime.  It will be put out once more, next Friday (25th), and then anything that is left after that will be recycled.  We still have lots of items left.

Please name all coats, cardigans and jumpers so that they can be returned to your child if found.

We had lots of fun learning about 'snot and bogeys' today and how our bodies use mucus to clean up and keep us safe.  We made pretend 'snot' and saw what happened when we added sand to be the germs and dirt that we breathe in.  It really helped the children to understand.  I hope to add some photos next week for you all to see!

You should have received an email about flu vaccinations from the office.  This is the 'flu sniff' that children are offered each year.  It doesn't hurt and is best described to the children as a sniff or a tickle.  The Government are urging people to take up the flu vaccinations offered, especially as the NHS faces increased pressure this year due to COVID-19.  The online form is very easy to fill out and it doesn't take long but it will have a deadline, after which it will be too late to sign up.

Please remember that only one adult per family should accompany the children onto the playground.

Have a good weekend and we'll see you on Monday!

Update 11/9/20

Well, it's been a busy first week and a bit back to school but it's been a great one.  The staff have been so impressed by how well the children have settled back into school.  They have been so happy to see each other again and we've been so happy to see them too.  We are all adapting to our new routines.  The children are taking the extra handwashing in their stride and are doing really well learning our new tidy-up procedures so that the staff can manage the enhanced cleaning timetable that enables the children to access the resouces needed for a Reception setting.

This week we got started on our phonics and maths learning in our special groups and the staff have been busy working out where the extra support is needed to fill the gaps in their learning.  We have been impressed with how well most of them are able to concentrate, despite their long break from in-school learning.

Reading books will be given out on Monday (14th) and then collected back in on the Friday to be quarantined over the weekend.  Please hunt for any reading books you have at home and send them back in.  Each child took two home at the start of Lockdown.  School budgets are tight so we would really appreciate you searching for them and returning them.  We collected some in today.  Please send your child's bookbag in on Mondays and Fridays each week.

Don't forget, the children can bring wellies to school if they would like to play in the mud kitchen.  It's easiest to have a pair that they leave in school so that your child doesn't have to carry them in and out every day.

Next Friday (18th September) we will put the lost property from the Reception cohort out in front of the Reception area fence.  Please take the opportunity to look through it (with social distancing in mind) to see if anything belongs to your child. You may wish to bring hand sanitiser to use after handling the items.  We will then quarantine the items and bring them back out the following Friday.  Anything that is left after that will be recycled.  We have reunited children with named items and items that they recognised.  We have a lot of unnamed jumpers and cardigans from last year.  

Please name all coats, cardigans and jumpers so that they can be returned to your child if found.

Have a good weekend and we'll see you on Monday!

Lining up for parents and carers

Thank you to those of you lining up on the correct sides.  It really helps us to get the children out to you at the end of the day if we can see you where we expect you to be lined up.  You will now see that we have signs on each side of the gate to remind you where to wait for your child. Below you also will see the videos that tell you where to line up and how the children come into school.  Thank you for your support in staying on the playground and keeping other children out of the Reception area too.





As you can see, the classrooms look different but there are still lots of things that will feel familiar to the children.  We have carefully selected which resources have the most benefit to the children's learning and have the most reduced risk.  We have a rigorous and thorough cleaning schedule and there will plenty of handwashing to keep the children and staff safe.  

Platypups classroom

Joeys classroom


Reading books will be given out on Mondays and collected in on Fridays (for quarantine purposes).  Please ensure your child brings their book bag on these days.

There are lots of ways you can support your child with reading at home so that your ENJOYS, ENGAGES and EXCELS. 

  • ENJOY sharing stories together.  Have fun looking at books together and read stories to your child.  Find a way to build storytime into your routines at home.  Bedtime is an ideal time to share a book because it is a good calming activity before settling down to bed.
  • Ask questions such as what happened in the story, why did that happen, how did she feel when that happened/how do you know, have you ever felt like that, what do you think will happen next/can you guess what will happen on the next page, which word told you she was scared? Don't ask too many questions or you will lose the flow of the story.  Questions ENGAGE your child with the story content.
  • Be excited to read - if you are enjoying it, your child is more likely to and when they enjoy it, they start to engage with it.
  • Look at the reading books together that are sent home from school.  If your child is confident then read it to them the first time they look at it.  This isn't cheating, don't worry!  Your child will feel more confident to look at the words and work them out if they are already familiar.  You could also try the 'jump in' strategy if they are still lacking confidence - read most of the sentence and get them to follow the words with their finger and then stop at a word that is easy to sound out and let them 'jump in' and read that one for you.  Explain that you need their help to read it.
  • Aim to read the school reading book every day.  That's only four times a week under our covid-secure reading book timetable.  Find a time that works best for you.  You might find that bedtime isn't the right time for them to be reading to you if they find it frustrating.  
  • If your child enjoys and engages with reading, then they will start to excel.



If you want to support writing at home, look for reasons to give the writing a purpose.  Children are much more enthusiastic about writing when they have a reason to do it.  Maybe they can help with the shopping by writing five items on their list that they have to find as you go around the supermarket.  Perhaps they could invite their friend to play and write out an invitation. If you would like another copy of the Read Write Inc soundboards that we use, please ask a member of staff. 


Your child does not need to bring a PE kit to school at this time.  We will take the opportunity to do PE outdoors, when the weather is favourable at this stage.  Please make sure your child wears comfortable footwear that is suitable for running around in.  We are aiming to do PE on a Tuesday, if the weather permits, with a back-up in hand of Friday if the weather is poor earlier in the week.  We will wear our normal school clothes.


WOW Moments

We still really want to hear about your child's WOW moments!  Have they learned to ride a bike? Made progress with swimming?  Spotted numbers on the way home? Written something all by themselves? Read a sign whilst out shopping with you?  Celebrated a special occasion?  

We still want to hear about them but we are trying to limit the paper contact between home and school so if you have something special to share please email the class address at reception@dovecote.school

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