Newgate is the first step on your child’s journey at St Martin’s Academy.

This is the ‘reception’ class, also known as the Foundation Stage 2 and continues the Early Years Foundation Stage Profile that they will have started in pre school. Newgate follow the play based curriculum which is established in pre school. This is progressively strengthened to challenge every child to strive towards excellence in achieving the Early Learning Goals at the end of reception.

The team in Newgate ensure that your children transition to school is as smooth as possible. They complete pre-school visits for each child as well as a home visit during their first half term at school.

A typical day in Newgate:

Morning Challenge

Like all classes within St Martin’s Academy, begins with Morning Challenge. These activities are prepared for children to consolidate or extend their prior learning across the curriculum areas. These often are fine motor, letter formation, simple numeracy or investigation activities.


The children will experience a daily phonics session. St Martins follow the RWI phonics programme of study.These sessions include the introduction of a new sound, a reading session and a writing application session.
At the beginning of the academic year the children will focus on initial sounds and then progress to set 2 digraphs. The children will then be spending more time on these sounds and using and applying them.

Snack Time

The children have the opportunity to purchase toast and juice. These items are 25p each. The children really enjoy using their money in a practical way and learn to recognise the coins they use. We do allow an alternative morning snack of fruit from home if you wish to supply this.

Literacy and Mathematics

Newgate follow a play based curriculum. The children receive an alternate Literacy and Mathematics curriculum. Each day will rotate where by the children receive a Literacy adult led focus with a Mathematics focus within their play based learning environment. This is rotated the following day to have a Mathematics adult led focus with a Literacy provision focus. The children look at the key four areas of Reading, Writing, Number and Shape, Space and Measure.

Lunch Time

Steve the Chef creates a range of wonderful lunches for the children to ensure that they are recharged for the afternoon learning. These are freshly prepared daily and are eaten around a table together. Every Wednesday the children in Newgate will eat a delicious roast dinner with their teachers and share any exciting news spending time together as a Newgate family.

Enriched Learning

The children have the opportunities within the afternoons to experience a breathe enriched curriculum through their topic theme. The children are encouraged to engage with curriculum areas such as Exploring Media and Materials, Communication and Language skills, Physical Development, Understand the World and Personal and Social skills. The opportunities vary from adult led activities to child initiated activities.

Physical Education

Although the children have access to fine and gross motor resources at all times in their provision areas the children also have taught sessions weekly. Every Tuesday and Thursday the children require their P.E kit for taught sessions by a P.E specialist, Miss Valentine. As the year progresses the children will experience a weekly swimming session on a Friday morning.

Days Out

Throughout the academic year the children will experience a range of experiences both in and outside of the setting as the team aim to have an off site visit once every half term. These visits help to enhance the children’s learning or new life experiences. These have previously been places such as the fire service, Chester Zoo, Ice Cream Farm,Superhero School and Dragon Training School.

Your child’s first year at school is to secure a solid foundation of learning to support their later adventures throughout their time at St Martins Academy. The team look at supporting the child as whole to develop not only academically but emotionally and physically.