GLF Schools

GLF Schools

GLF Schools was founded in 2012 in order to enable the federation of Glyn School (an academy in 2011) and Danetree Junior School. Together, we began our journey to become a MAT of more than 1000 talented staff working with over 10,000 children in 40 schools across 5 regions in southern England.

Our Schools

Banbury Region

Banstead Region

Berkshire & Hampshire Region

Caterham Region

Crawley Region

Didcot Region

Epsom Region

London Boroughs

Redhill Region

Sunbury & Camberley Region

Preparing your Child For School

About Us


Early Years may be the first year in school, but it is important for us to highlight that we continue and consolidate the learning that your child started in their nursery or pre-school and follow the Early Years Foundation Stage.  Our emphasis is still very much on learning through play, but play that has been planned for and deliberately resourced to develop the children’s next steps.  Adults model, encourage and extend learning through their questioning.  We observe what the children are doing and how they are learning in order to assess the children at the end of the year against the Early Learning Goals.  Our goal is to create independent, resilient and adaptable learners that are ready for the National Curriculum when they go into Year 1.

Early Years currently work as a unit where children and adults across both classes work collaboratively in the two classrooms and outdoor area.  The children will  have a named class teacher and ‘base’ classroom for their belongings and taught sessions.

This unit approach has enabled us to provide better provision and resources to create enabling environments.  You will learn more about the way we run and why we do things the way we do at our initial parents meeting for parents in September.  This will be a good opportunity for you to ask us any questions you may have.


Helping your child to prepare for school


Children grow and develop at different rates and they learn through the experiences we provide and the examples we set.  Children learn best when they are able to develop belief in themselves and their own abilities.



Speaking and Listening

Children learn by talking about the world around them.  The way we talk to children shows them how we would like them to talk to us.   It is important to allow children the time to think for themselves: we are quick to jump in and often find ourselves answering a question for them.  Help your child develop and extend their vocabulary and curiosity by asking them questions.  Encourage confidence by allowing your child to speak for themselves; rather than speaking for them.  Ask the questions ‘Who…?’, ‘Why…?’, ‘What…?’, ‘When…?’ and ‘How…?’ to develop greater understanding.

Learning Through Play

Play is the way in which children learn best at this age.  Play helps to develop children’s language and thinking.  They need to play with toys, to play outside, to pretend and play with others. 

They need to learn to share and take turns: an adult playing with a child can encourage this.  Playing games helps children to develop concentration and learn to enjoy playing the games when they don’t win.  Children need to learn to play independently with others.  Encourage them to make choices by selecting two activities for them to choose between.  Value their help by giving them simple jobs to do in the house and garden.  At school, children will be expected to tidy away equipment they use; prepare them for this by making them responsible for their toys at home.

Becoming more independent

Children will need to be able to put their coats on and hang them on their cloakroom peg.  They will need to be able to undress and dress for PE.  They will feel more confident if they have clothes they can manage for themselves, like shoes with Velcro.  You can practise over the Summer break how to change into and out of their school uniform and PE kit.  They need to be able to manage in the toilet independently.  Encourage good hygiene at home, ensuring they remember to flush the toilet and wash their hands afterwards.


Being happy and comfortable with their peers is a very important part of school life. It is beneficial for all children to socialise with both familiar friends, and children that are not in their immediate friendship circle.

Leaving You

Starting school can be a daunting and exciting opportunity for both you and your child. We have carefully planned our transition programme to enable your child to become as familiar with our unit and staff as possible.  

In the event of tears at drop off time the best thing you can do, is to leave as swiftly as you can with one last hug and a big smile. Prepare your child for this separation in the morning and give them techniques for independence. Encourage them to seek out a friend or an adult for support, or remind them of an activity they enjoy doing at school. As soon as you are out of sight and they are busy putting their things away, those tears will disappear. 


Developing basic skills


The early stages of development are individual to each child.  Use your nursery or pre-school reports to determine where your child is at and what their next steps are to help them prepare for September.

Early Reading

Sharing and enjoying books with your child is an essential part of early reading.  Encourage an interest in books and stories by reading and looking at picture books together.  Talk about the story and what is happening in the pictures.  Create a special place in their bedroom with cushions and their favourite stories at hand.  Children begin to learn stories by heart and begin to use the story language in their imaginative play.  Listen to story CDs and visit the local library.  Notice words in the environment by pointing our labels and street signs.  Help your child to recognise their name and they will soon begin to notice their name in other contexts.  This will prepare them for finding their cloakroom peg.

Early Writing

Children need lots of experience with drawing, colouring, cutting and sticking to prepare for learning to write.  Malleable resources such as playdough and doing up buttons help to develop fine motor skills and co-ordination which link to writing.  Help your child understand what writing is for, by seeing you write for a purpose; lists, notes, letters.  Your child will begin to develop a preference for a dominant hand and will then go through a series of developmental stages in how to hold their pencil correctly.

Children will begin to make marks (squiggles, lines and shapes) to represent writing, then, as their phonic knowledge develops, they will begin to incorporate the sounds learnt when writing. 

Early Mathematics

We use mathematics all the time, in shapes, sizes and time as well as numbers and counting.  Allow your child to sort objects by putting items such as cutlery away.  Encourage them to put things in order of size.  Develop counting skills, e.g. climbing stairs or counting the number of carrots on their plate.  Children can learn to recognise numbers on doors or on car license plates.  Develop a sense of time by talking about today, tomorrow and yesterday.  Discuss what activities you are going to do at certain times, or recall past events in the correct order like making a cake. 

Many parents ask how they can help their child prepare for school.  We hope this booklet has given you some ideas as we understand that starting school is a big step for both you and your child.  

We have arranged several opportunities for children to become familiar with the school in order to create a smooth transition in September.  Each year, we ask our Early Years parents to share what they felt helped their child settle into school via a questionnaire.  We consider your views together with the knowledge we have of this transition period, in order to make it as smooth as possible for all. 

If you have any worries or concerns now or at any time in the school year, the most important thing you should do is to share them with your child’s class teacher or another member of the Early Years team.  We are here to listen and work together with you, so that your child can have the best start to their education.