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Early Years


Early Years

Latest news

18 June 2024 in Latest news

Griffin Schools Trust National Finals

A huge congratulations to our sports team for their outstanding performance at the Griffin Schools Trust National Finals! The boys' basketball team secured 1st place as the Boys Basketball Champions,…
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16 June 2024 in Latest news

Exploring Coral Conservation: A Collaboration with UCL and Riverley STEAM ambassadors

Thank you to all our aspiring scientists who visited the UCL exhibition, where we showcased our collaborative group work on combating the effects of coral bleaching in our oceans. This…
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16 June 2024 in Latest news

Sports Day 2024

Today our annual Sports Day brought us all together for a day full of fun, fitness, and friendly competition. The atmosphere was electric as the children participated in a variety…
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16 June 2024 in Latest news

International Play Day 2024

Today, Riverley celebrated International Play Day by bringing together different year groups to create a day full of enriching experiences. We understand that play is vital for children's development and…
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To ensure that all children leave EYFS as resilient, confident, independent learners who have made great progress from their individual starting points and are ready for KS1.

At Riverley, we aim to provide motivating, hands on memorable learning experiences that encourage children to display ambition and develop a lifelong love of learning. As part of the Griffin Schools Trust, our children are part of a school and wider community who engage in Proud Traditions, Wide Horizons and Achieve Highly in all areas of school life.

We recognise that all children are unique and celebrate and embrace differences. Therefore, our curriculum is child-centred following the interests of the children. We are passionate about children leading and engrossing themselves in their own learning. Through our whole school approach to ‘Learning in the Deep’, based on the characteristics of effective teaching and learning experiences, we ensure that our children understand and can discuss the value of the process of learning as well as the outcome. This is embedded in the children from when they first start in our Nursery. We work in partnership with families and other settings to provide the best possible start at Riverley and ensure that every child reaches their full potential from their various starting points.

We aim to:

  • Provide a bespoke curriculum that offers children a range of opportunities for children to widen their horizons. Through creative opportunities in our indoor and outdoor provision, children are inspired to try new things and relish a challenge
  • Ensure that we have high expectations of all pupils encouraging them to develop perseverance and self-belief so that they can problem solve and achieve beyond expected. By the end of the Reception year, our intent is to ensure that all children make great progress in all areas of learning and are equipped with the skills and knowledge to have a smooth transition into Year 1
  • Provide a stimulating learning environment that helps children achieve their potential and support those who need additional help in order to maximise their chances of achieving their Early Learning Goals
  • Afford children the opportunity to develop their sense of wellbeing and ability to regulate their feelings so that they feel confident, safe and nurtured and are equipped with all the tools they need to transition to Year 1 effectively
  • Enhance the skills and expertise of staff working in EYFS through regular and comprehensive professional development

Build meaningful partnerships with families and other settings to provide the best start to each child’ s education at Riverley. We host weekly Stay and Play Sessions for our families to attend prior to joining our school so that families and children can familiarise themselves with our school and ethos



Each half term, EYFS staff introduce a new theme to provide inspiration for learning, whilst also providing the flexibility for children to follow their own interests and ideas. The Nursery and Reception team work closely together to plan for the shared outdoor environments and communication is key to this. Both teams get to know the needs of all the children in the provision. The children learn through a balance of child-initiated and adult-directed activities. In Nursery Key Worker Groups take place twice a day where they have input sessions in smaller groups with their key adult. Additionally, in Reception the timetable is carefully structured so that children have direct instruction over the course of the day. Through the focused inputs in both across EYFS, adults can systematically check for understanding, identify and respond to misconceptions quickly and provide real-time verbal feedback. This has a positive impact on the acquisition of new learning. The timetables in EYFS change throughout the year to take into consideration the changing needs of the children as we prepare them for the next stage of their education.

Children are provided with time to engage in ‘exploration’ throughout the variety of experiences which are carefully planned to engage and challenge children. The curriculum is planned meticulously both inside and outside the classrooms – with equal importance given to learning in both areas.

Our enabling environments are warm, exciting, stimulating and inviting. They arouse children’s curiosity and foster a sense of awe and wonder. 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 and sustained thinking.

When teaching phonics, we follow the RWI phonics programme which this child will engage in until the end of KS1. The Nursery team begin by focusing on developing children’s speaking and listening skills. This lays a solid foundation for the acquisition of phonics which commences when children are ready for ‘word time’ and acquiring the Set 1 Sounds. The early emphasis in Nursery is getting children attuned to the sounds around them in order for them to be ready to begin developing oral blending and segmenting skills, prior to word time. In Reception, the children work through the RWI programme and are assessed half termly on their segmenting and blending skills to decode words. Children are encouraged to read at home and are listened to regularly in school. They are provided with home reading books that match their phonetical knowledge which allows our children to apply their learning with the aim of becoming successful, confident and fluent readers.

We follow the Number and Patterns Guidance to enable us to lay secure mathematical foundations for our young mathematicians. Through this targeted teaching approach, children progress through phases at an appropriate pace. This ensures that there are no gaps in their early acquisition of mathematical concepts which they will build upon securely as they move through the school.

Outside of their exceptional EYFS provision focusing on the 7 areas of learning our, children are provided with opportunities to develop and nurture talents in STEM, the Arts and Sport. The children engage in weekly Forest School sessions, Music, Computing, Drama and P.E all delivered by specialist teachers. This ensures that children are provide with a rich and varied curriculum which sparks curiosity leading children to making informative choices around hobbies and further exploring new interests.

We provide effective and focused targeted provision for those children who are finding learning challenging and are not on track to meet expectations at the end of the year. This will be provided in an inclusive way and support from families is also enlisted, at an early stage, to ensure that the children have every chance to achieve the Early Learning Goals and are prepared for future learning.

The EYFS team celebrate children’s learning through work completed in their special books, observations, photos and videos which are shared with parents using the Evidence Me App. This allows families the opportunity to engage with children regularly about their learning and their contributions adds to the knowledge we have of the child in school.

We provide a wide range of trips and experiences across the school year which ensures that children widen their horizons. Children participate in the Griffin arts festival – a two-week emersion into the creative arts. Science Week, Our Nativity performance, Year group assemblies, Career’s week, bring a Stick to School Day, Hello Yellow Day, World Book Day, regular Trips to our local area and beyond. These trips and wider experiences as well as topic introductions, weekly, enhances children’s understanding of the world and key concepts.

We measure progress and children’s learning across the year through formative and summative assessment which are based on the teacher’s knowledge of the child, their learning journeys, photographs and videos recorded Evidence Me.

As the children’s EYFS journey comes to an end, the EYFS team work closely with the year 1 team to ensure a smooth and seamless transition. During the Summer Term, children in our Reception classes, spend three days in their new setting with their new teachers. A detailed handover takes places through the sharing of books, observations and information about the whole-child. The reception class teachers meet with the year one team and through the sharing of books, observations, information about the whole child so the year 1 understand how their planning and environment can be maximised to best suit the needs of the children. Both children and families feel much more at ease with the transition to Year 1 and it is already familiar to them prior to September.



The impact of our bespoke and broad curriculum is reflected in having well rounded, happy and confident children transitioning into Year 1 and parents who understand and are involved their child’s progression. The children are often amazing role models for others in school.

Children leave EYFS with a deep understanding for the foundations of early maths and literacy.

Children leave EYFS with a love of books and a secure foundation in phonics.

Children leave EYFS able to challenge themseleves and reflect on their learning using Learning in The Deep. They are able to choose independnent challenges and show resliance when facing them.

Children leave EYFS able to regulate their emotions and talk about how they feel.

Children leave EYFS displaying a keen interest in STEM and music as well as wider curriculum.

Our children exceed National and Local data children achieving Good Level of Development. All of our children make accelerated progress from their various starting points and are well prepared for year one.



Our Nursery offers both 15 and 30 hour provision. We have 20 morning and 20 afternoon places, we also offer 10 full time sessions.

If you wish your child to join our Nursery, applications can be made direct at the Riverley office. Places are allocated according to age; we are currently admitting children the term after they turn 3.

For full time places, you will need to provide your 30-hour eligibility code at the application stage. If you are not eligible for the 30-hour code and would like to pay for a full time place, please speak to the School Office. For full time places a fee of £3.00 (including a school meal) is payable for the one-hour lunch period.

Please note, we are not able to offer any flexible hours or days. The sessions we offer at Riverley Nursery are:

AM Session 8:50am-11:50am

PM Session 12:25pm -3:25pm

Full Time – 8:50am – 3:25pm

You must attend at least two Stay and Play Sessions with your child in order for them to be offered a place at Riverley Nursery. These sessions are free of charge and are run every Monday from 9am-10am. Your child will need to be at a minimum of two years of age to attend, there is no need to book. Please use the reception entrance via Park Road and register on arrival.

For more information please contact our school office.



At Riverley, the EYFS curriculum is designed to encourage independent, inquisitive, resilient and happy life-long learners. We recognise children’s prior learning and various starting points, and create a holistic curriculum. The curriculum maximises cross-curricular links and builds strong foundations for their future, for instance, our outdoor environment mirrors the indoor and we seek to create nature connections through weekly forest school opportunities and our teaching and learning based around the seasons.


Proud Traditions | Wide Horizons | High Achievement