Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage

Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage

I have been primary teaching for over 20 yrs, mainly in eyfs. I have been a FS1 manager, taught in p

Operating as usual

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 19/10/2023

A few more we have finished 😊


Another Supersonic Phonic Friends
display to add to our collection 😉
We are going to display examples of our phonics work, showing progression and celebrating success

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 05/09/2023

I add little things to help ease the worries of first days!
A bubble machine and some Disney music work wonders!
In my parents meeting I tell parents that they have to try to be excited and positive whilst dropping off and are allowed to cry when their children can’t see: so I always provide the tissues!


A few photos of the inside of my learning environment, obviously more tweaking to do and more bits and bobs to add… but a start!


Favourite moment of yesterday…. My class home learning for the holiday was to make a cage and bring in a toy animal to share in class for our vet surgery. They have embraced this to the full and have been so proud to share their creations, who they made it with, how and what is wrong with their animal.
They are learning to share their personal toys too!
Yesterday was saus the sausage dog.
He had hurt his paw running into his owners bed.
Whilst chatting I asked the class, does anyone know the other grown up word for sausage dog, beginning with d.
Cue enormous chorus of super confident little people….
… well I asked 🤣

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 05/05/2023

A few snippets from coronation week, we have done lots but I am too exhausted to remember them all!
Every child in my class has watched Frozen so this made it soooooo easy to talk about what a coronation is! We watched Elsa’s and talked about what they know and what we will see.
Our pshe this week has been about friendship and so we talked about what makes a good friend. I have the children a copy of the Kings coronation invite for them to write their own name and their bestie!
I was really impressed with my little people, when I explained that usually the eldest child takes the royal title- we went around the class working out who would take the crown and who would give theirs to an older sibling.
IN school children made their own aeroplanes for a royal flyover which were judged by a real pilot. They made crowns, we had our own version of a street party and invited in our local elderly community for afternoon tea.
Enjoy your weekend 👑👑👑


I ended the day eating my favourite sweets- jelly beans, the children clearly told me that caring is sharing- so I shared some with everyone. My fabulous TA hates jelly beans and launched them across the classroom… so the next day we came into find a beanstalk had grown. As soon as they realised then whole class ran straight outside and looked up to see if they could see a castle in the sky!
I got them to promise they wouldn’t try and climb the beanstalk as my job is to keep them safe- not feed them to hungry giants!


My mum had to have a beautiful oak tree cut down in her front garden… so i had to have as much as I could fit in my car to create some seating for my stage. Amazing how a teeny change suddenly creates such imaginative play. The logs have been seats, climbing areas and Mario’s plumbing!


Blustery walk home from parents evening, where did the beautiful sunny spring weather go?!


Last week I had the strangest week of my career (apart from covid) most of my class either had a sickness bug or chicken pox, so by Tuesday I was down to about 13 children and so I scrapped my planning and we did different things!
This week we are back on it!
Yesterday we went on a bear hunt around our school grounds, climbed through the long grass, pushed our way through the forest listening to the sounds of the branches snapping as we went and climbed up and down the stairs before hiding under our coats.
Being 4 and 5 obviously they got a little excited and screamed when we found the bear!
A lovely year six boy had been reading a children’s survival guide and in it was how to survive a bear attack.
1. Don’t run (oops)
2. Don’t scream (ok we were definitely dinner!)
So we then read the rules and practised what to do! the children were awesome at standing thei ground when we pretended to be the growling bears!
Later we watched a bear information video to find out bear facts and work out what sort of bear had been in our room- we concluded it was a brown bear!

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 22/03/2023

A few little changes😌

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 16/03/2023

As the children came in, instantly some of them got down on all fours and tried to move along the footprints making growling noises and giggling (the sound of giggling children should be bottled and sold to boost people having a bad day!)
We turned into investigators….
What do we know?
Who do we think they belonged to?
Having had a discussion about paw prints, someone suggested it was me! So we checked our own prints just to make sure!
In true EY style we had some fab suggestions…
Werewolf … hope not!
Giraffe (would worry about my ceiling)
Bathtub - well some have feet!
Snake….. hmmmmmmmm will just leave that one there 😉


Guess my next story! …..

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 06/03/2023

A few little spring changes to our learning environment, we wanted to open up and encourage more learning in the maths area. It was the one area that was under used, children walked through but didn’t stop. Adding a big basket of cubes has meant that a big crowd of children have suddenly found a love of building in there, measuring each other, trying to make the longest model, largest, tallest and maths language is being used spontaneously 😊


My favourite part of our celebration theme has been using birthday photographs to talk about how we have changed. Children have made a birthday timeline and loved sharing their thoughts. I invited parents to write their memories of special days too. It has been humbling to see that my class this year really are the covid babies who have barely been able to celebrate birthdays until recently.
We now have a board of beautiful baby photos and we are using our detective skills to guess who is who!

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 25/01/2023

The start of the lunar new year….
We began the term learning about new year celebrations in the uk and abroad.
We danced and sang Auld Lang Syne, counted down till midnight and watched the fireworks displays around the world.
Our WOW science was transforming a old penny. We likened the old penny to the old year, a little tired - so talked about our new year and how we need to start again. Children put the penny in a pot (with vinegar) shook the pot and made a wish or a resolution.
At the end, we opened the pot to find the shiny new year- penny!
Today we found out how Chinese people eat their food and related using different tools to one of our friends who uses fingers or chapatis to eat.
I reminded the children of the festival Christmas and we talked about the greetings we said, before learning a little mandarin.
The home corner was ‘decorated’ by the little people… I left my box of bits out and so reels and reels of masking tape helped transform this into their version of a Chinese restaurant☺️


New term, new text, new theme… I made a cake for the class and when I went to get it out of the tin it had disappeared… the culprit was my little pooch, rocky!
Kippers birthday is our new driver.… this weeks homework is for parents- to find photos of their children’s birthdays, we are going to guess who is who, look at how we have changed and talk about our own celebrations.

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 20/12/2022

I realised I forgot to take any photos during the Christmas period- it was just toooooooo busy!
So as I took it all down I quickly snapped a photo of what was my heist as home corner- all decorated by the little people!
My advent calendar was above my reading area: I broke the Christmas story into 12 parts, each day some children’s name got taken out of the Christmas box, they got a chocolate lolly for finding the numicon numbered envelope and we sang that part of 12 days of Christmas.
I made a lantern for our first Christmas lantern parade- having spent most of my life in Germany I loved their Christmas traditions.
There was loads of other things but… I forgot to snap them!
Cribs, books, Christmas finger gym etc etc


On the other side of the gift tag was two photos: one of the child baking and the other of them stirring and making their wish … our gluten free, soya free, lactose free, vegetarian, halal class could all join in this year!


wow moment… I accidentally left my laptop camera in over lunch, looks like there was a big escape!
The first thing the children did was go and find all the magnifying glasses to look for clues … I love how their imagination works! Some made pictures of them and in true my class style- stuck them with glue (agh!) everywhere! Some wrote letters, and they watched this over and over and over again!

Early years foundation stage profile results, Academic Year 2021/22 24/11/2022

It’s released, what are your thoughts?
I spent a long time really considering my data- checking, double checking- reasoning, discussing…then two children joined our school at the end of the term from a local school having acheived all their ELGs, therefore obtaining GLD and yet didn’t know any digraphs.

Early years foundation stage profile results, Academic Year 2021/22 These statistics report on teacher assessments of children’s development at the end of the early years foundation stage (EYFS), specifically the end of the academic year in which a child turns 5. This is typically the summer term of reception year. The assessment framework, or EYFS profile...

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 11/11/2022

An evening of Remembrance at our wonderful school.
Every child made a jar and our community were welcomed to view the jars and reflect.


Today we will remember.
I will start off by writing the word remember and we will talk about all the things we have to remember and why: brush our hair, teeth, get dressed etc.
Then I will tell my class a story with no book or pictures, I will tell them about a young boy named Arthur, who became a sailor in the war, that he had to travel far away and leave his lovely girlfriend behind. I will tell them that his boat sank and he had to swim to shore where he was captured and held prisoner. I will tell them that his family were told he was dead.
A year later he was freed and returned home where he married his girlfriend and they had two sons.
One of which was my dad.
My grandad was Arthur. I always wait to the very end when the children are mesmerised by the story to tell them he was real. I have his photo with me today.
We will watch the powerful cartoon from cbeebies and then I guarantee my little four year olds will stand and respect the silence.


I never force it but I am never ceased to be amazed that when done in a way that they understand and with empathy to the appropriateness, that they can show respect.
I have real ration packs and real uniform to look at today.
We will remember them


It’s all about the poppies this week!
Although they are handprint poppies and I know some people hate repeated activities… I showed the children how I made mine and let them go! Hence some are black, painted etc.

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 19/10/2022

Not the best photos- however a few people who I know follow have also started to use
The big board is one I have created in the intervention room. I wanted an area where interventions could take place with a dedicated space, all resources ready to go and the least distraction. We have spoken about keeping the blinds closed to keep the focus on the phonics wall.
Still very much work in progress… big ideas- and as ever - not enough hours!


You know it is half term when.., your dining room is full of books to relabel- again!!!!

Team KGPS 06/10/2022

Super proud to be part of this team!


Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 06/10/2022

Our new little ‘pets’ stickman 1, 2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10.. I spent a long time working out these names!!
They have been a big hit so far, I love watching the little people sit down and watch them through the magnifying glass… they particularly enjoy watching them dance!


Little revamp of our imagination station… not sure what I am doing with the pallet yet… to be decided! 😌

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 14/09/2022

Starting school.
It’s that time of year again! 😊
One of the first tasks is for children to use the staff mini me’s.
We take them around the school in small groups to look around, meet the children and staff. Find our school pets and spot siblings and friends around school.
I always send a staff mini me with each group and they have to find that staff member somewhere in the school to find out who they are and what they do.


I made a little area in my room for those children who want to talk about the Queen. I have chosen not to talk about it with the whole class as it is so early in the term and the little people are still learning to trust me with their emotions.
However as I know people are talking about the current events and seeing lots of different emotions I thought it right to give children who need that time an area


This week I have been really pleasantly surprised by how much my new little people have used the tools I have to help with the settling in.
It is clear they watched the story videos and used the social stories.
I have had to dig stories out of my cupboard that they have remembered from visits and find special dressing up outfits.
I have a little person who doesn’t speak.… this week the little person took me by the hand and led me to the social story book I left out on display, flicking through the pages until the self registration Apple tree was shown.
For some unexplained reason this year, despite going up in price by 1/3 they took two weeks to deliver and and so were not ready for last week.
I love the fact that the little person remembered and wanted their own little identity in school! The apples finally arrived yesterday and so I will make sure they are finished and up on pegs tomorrow 😉


After a fabulous Friday visit… bananas put out his jitter glitter and got to bed!

This year as we started on a Friday I asked my class to come and visit instead. No uniform, just a casual visit to find their peg and re orientate!

Today was our first day, I prepped parents before hand and they were fab… saving their tears for the gate as they left!
We had a whole class of happy little people come up the path to my animal challenges, we blasted out the Disney tunes as they arrived!

Day one and I don’t ‘expect’ anything, it’s all about getting to know each other and beginning to build up trust with everyone.
To my delight they asked for story time and we even played a maths game! My little superstars even tidied away!

I hope your day one was super too!


We have sold up and moved out, the lights are off and a gin is about to be poured.
School is out for summer…. Well till Monday when I am back in with a list as long as my arm… teachers have six weeks summer holiday: who said that?!?!?
Happy holidays everyone.
I hope you manage to switch off… something I am pretty dreadful at, I am working up to it!


Today my lovely head has allowed me the chance to walk my little girl to primary school for the last time.
I am also getting to attend her leavers assembly.
As a teacher I have missed out on so so many of her school milestones. Previous heads have not allowed me to attend her milestones.
I never got to take her to her first day at school.
I never got to her sports days or assemblies.
I never saw her join in the Christmas carol concert.
So this to me is more precious than gold.
I have French braided her hair and insisted she wear something pretty at the end as I know this will be the last time.
These few steps are so precious.
I always tell parents when they leave their child in my care that I understand and today as my class leave me… I will also feel that transition 💕


Two transition visits complete…
First photos sent home 😊
Tomorrow I am doing the ‘new parent chat’ whilst the little people have their third visit - this time their parents will be with me.
Some children have had extra visits and I still have a few to go.
Tomorrow when the children leave, they will take home a little bag with some little challenges and things to help them remember their time in school so that it isn’t a distant memory when they come back in September.
When I visited children in their FS1 provision I shared a social story with important photos, and left a copy for them and their nursery.
I have been really pleased that this year again parents are really using our webpage to watch the stories and videos- it has meant the children have all recognised me and were happy to meet me 😍

Photos from Early Years Learning Environment by Cupcakes and Camouflage's post 12/07/2022

Our new story is ‘A house for Hermit crab’ by Eric Carle. The same author as our previous book.
I wanted us to move on to talk about the oceans and summer.
The book is a great opportunity to develop children’s understanding of outgrowing Reception!
The new classroom in year one may look different at first but they can soon choose lovely things to make it just perfect! (Although our year one teacher is awesome!)
So far children have compared their homes to the Hermit crabs and used the opportunity to talk about our school home: what we like and what they would like to take into their new year one classroom with them.
We have sorted and matched pictures of seaside settings long ago and modern photos: to generate discussion.
In finger gym children had to draw a spiral shell and cut it out.

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Videos (show all)

A few little snapshots of Remembrance
A few little snap shots
Golly- I hadn’t realised how long it had been since posting anythingWe are waiting day to day for that call and so life ...
September set up
Guess my next story! …..
New term, new text, new theme… I made a cake for the class and when I went to get it out of the tin it had disappeared… ...
#talkforwriting wow moment… I accidentally left my laptop camera in over lunch, looks like there was a big escape!The fi...