St Joseph's Catholic Primary and Nursery School, Pontefract.


Welcome to the Foundation Stage at St Joseph’s Pontefract!

Hello and welcome to the Foundation Stage class page! The Foundation Stage Team are very excited to welcome you and your child into our school. We have a fun filled classroom that engages and supports learning. The Foundation Stage helps us to settle into school, be happy, make friends and begin our primary school journey. 

Please find below information, key documents and useful resources for you and your child. 

If you ever have any questions, please feel free to contact us. 

The Early Years Team 

The class teachers in Lower Foundation are Mrs McHale and Mrs Birch. The Teaching Assistants in Lower Foundation are Mrs Rotherforth and Mrs Mace. 

The class teacher in Upper Foundation is Mrs Grace. The Teaching Assistants in Upper Foundation are Mrs Conboy and Mrs Wilson

Our Early Years Principles

Within our Foundation Stage we follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Principles, which guide the work of our staff. These are grouped into four themes and are at the core of our commitment to providing quality care and education at St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School Pontefract - A Unique Child, Positive Relationships, Enabling Environments and Learning & Development. 

The Early Learning Goals

Throughout the Nursery and Reception years, each individual child will develop a range of knowledge, skills and understanding to work towards them achieving the Early Learning Goals at the end of the Foundation Stage. Our aim is to tailor the education of each child, by looking at their next steps of development, through both the prime and specific areas of learning.   

The three prime areas are: 

  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development 
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development 

The four specific areas are: 

  • Literacy 
  • Mathematics 
  • Understanding the World 
  • Expressive arts and design 

The children will also develop their characteristics of effective learning which are, playing and exploring, active earning and creative and critical thinking.

We also follow our school RE scheme, "The Way, The Truth and the Life" in which children learn about and explore the Christian faith. It also gives opportunities for children to learn about other major world faiths.

Our work across the curriculum is built around topic areas which change each half term. Each topic is linked to stories to promote the children’s speaking and listening skills alongside a love for reading.


Our Learning Environment

Our Foundation Stage is a welcoming, engaging and nurturing environment. We offer continuous provision in all the areas of learning to enable our children to thrive, explore and develop with a good balance of child and adult initiated learning opportunities.  The teaching and learning is carefully planned to stimulate children’s development. We believe that children learn best from practical experience, both inside and outside the classroom, and we make use of our outdoor provision areas. 

During these formative years, the progress of each child is closely monitored and through careful planning, observation and assessment, the next steps for their learning and development are continually identified and encouraged to enable each child to achieve their full potential. 


As a Foundation Stage Team we aim to provide our children with an active, fun filled, exciting learning experience which will lay the foundations for the children's future.