Return to Parents

Prospective Parents – Reception 2024

Welcome to Manland Primary School!
Take a tour
What our parents say about us
Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)
Inclusion for all!
An overview of Key Stage 1 (KS1)
An overview of Key Stage 2 (KS2)
Wider Curriculum

Welcome to Manland Primary School!

We appreciate that choosing a school for your child can be both daunting and exciting! We hope that this page and the rest of our website will give you a ‘flavour’ of what life is like for children who attend our school.

At Manland Primary School, we believe that every child matters, every day and our priority is for our pupils to love learning through a broad and balanced curriculum which is exciting and constantly developing. We are committed to inspiring and developing confident, independent individuals who take ownership of their learning and are well prepared for the next stage of their education journey. We extend our curriculum in order to provide a wide range of opportunities for pupils to experience and enhance success.  

We are a one-form entry primary school. Children start their school life in Reception and leave in Year 6 to move on to secondary school.

We also have a private on site Woodland Nursery for children from 2 years of age. We also offer wrap around care at a Breakfast and After School club (on site) which is open from 7.30am until 6.30pm.

Take a tour

If you would like to take a guided tour of our wonderful school, please contact the office.

While you’re waiting for your tour, why not take a virtual visit:

What our Parents say about us

“With just one class per year, Manland is smaller than most schools and this gives a close-knit, family feeling within the school.

  • The pupils and staff at Manland know each child’s name and his/her family. 
  • Older pupils are kind and caring towards the younger children.
  • Manland staff are supportive and encouraging to help children challenge themselves and try new activities.
  • There is an emphasis on children becoming more independent and taking on greater responsibilities as they progress within the school.
  • The school has a lovely large field and separate playground areas for infants and juniors. These have great views across Harpenden to the surrounding fields and provide a spacious and semi-rural atmosphere.
  • Manland maintains a strong focus on traditional values such as good manners, respect and care.”

“Manland School has provided a caring and supportive environment that has enabled my child to feel safe, confident and happy at school.” – Year 5 parent

“My eldest left Manland Primary this year with seven years of wonderful memories. She loved the small size of the school where everybody gets to know each other, she fondly remembers her supportive teachers and TAs, and she has made many wonderful friends through school. As my daughter moved up at Manland Primary she also relished the opportunities she was given: representing the school on the girls’ football and netball teams, playing her part on the school council, and even singing at the Royal Albert Hall with the school choir. Manland Primary has given her the experiences, education and confidence she needs as she moves to secondary school this year. I’m very happy that my two younger children are following in her footsteps at Manland.” – Year 3 and 5 parent.
“My child is very happy at Manland. She has thrived in the small, friendly environment that Manland provides. I have been really impressed with how my child has developed academically. Each child has specific targets which push them to achieve the most they can; it has done wonders for my daughter’s confidence, particularly in Maths. I feel really lucky that we are part of the Manland family.” – Year 6 parent
“When we first visited Manland, we were attracted to the size of the school. It felt intimate and welcoming and we were greeted warmly by the teachers. The children were friendly, well mannered and eager to show us around and answer our questions. Their lovely work and Manland values were evident throughout the school. Two of our three children have moved onto secondary school now and were sad to leave – but the school provided them with a fantastic education, lasting friendships and very happy memories.” – Year 5 parent
“Manland is such a warm, caring school. Everyone knows everyone’s name and you know that your child is looked after as an individual, not just a pupil. Emotional well-being is valued as much as academics, which makes all the difference to your children’s health, happiness and success. As a parent, you are confident that the school is working to do the best for your unique child at all times, which is wonderful.” Reception, Year 2 and Year 4 parent.

Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum sets standards for learning, development and care from birth to five years. Reception is the final year of the EYFS curriculum, before children move on to the National Curriculum in Key Stage one.

The EYFS values a play based approach, and learning is demonstrated in a range of forms. At Manland Primary School we value every child as an individual and celebrate their uniqueness, supporting all children to reach their full potential. We believe that learning should be meaningful and fun, and strive to educate the ‘whole child’.
The EYFS curriculum is highly skills based, and gives us the opportunity to follow children’s interests around topics. We have had some fantastic learning experiences in the past, from knights, pirates, owls, and space to name a few! Our highly trained staff creatively plan and support children’s next steps based on their interests, helping children develop a love of learning and achieve their next steps.
We believe that real life learning experiences help the children see how learning a new skill will be helpful in life. Whenever possible we link learning to real life experiences, such as writing a list of ingredients we need for a recipe and taking it with us to the local shops. We encourage risk taking within our safe environment, such as using a sewing machine, learning to use hammers and saws and using knives to chop food during cooking. Trusting children to be safe and developing independence in our youngest pupils develops a ‘can do’ attitude and helps build competent learners. We welcome visitors from our local community and plan exciting school trips, such as visits to the pantomime or farm.
Outdoor learning is at the heart of our curriculum and we are very lucky to have access to a woodland area. Within our daily learning, children choose to move freely between indoors and outdoors, both in the morning and afternoon using our outside classroom area. Here we have a range of activities to develop their learning, including a mud kitchen, gravel pit, sand pit, water area, woodwork station and mark-making area to name a few. Our woodland area gives us scope to offer forest schools sessions, providing activities that value nature, taking care of our environment, investigation skills and team work.
In Reception, we teach through a mixture of Adult Directed (AD) and Child Initiated Learning (CIL). During AD times, we might work as a whole class, in small groups or 1:1 to develop a specific skill, such as maths, phonics or art. In CIL, children have access to an inviting play-based classroom, which offers a range of activities that the children can access independently.
The classroom is set up into areas, including messy play, art area, message centre, maths, investigation, role play, small world, construction, book corner, ICT and fine motor control to name a few. The outdoor classroom is set up in a similar way, but offers different areas, such as PE and water areas. The adult plans enhancements that link to a specific skill or interest to further develop the children’s learning. For instance, if the children were learning to order numerals one to ten, we might place some numbered clothes on a clothes line in the home corner, and some numbered cars and a car park in the small world area.
Our timetable is fluid, changing to suit the needs of the children and their development. A typical day might look like this…

  • Busy fingers – Children begin school and go straight to a busy fingers activity. This helps them settle into the school day and gives them opportunities to develop their fine motor skills, paramount to becoming a good writer.
  • Registration – We register the children and sing our welcome songs.
  • Adult directed session – This might have a maths, literacy or topic focus, sometimes all three! Children might work as a whole class or in smaller groups, depending on the activity.
  • Snack – We enjoy a healthy snack together.
  • Child Initiated Learning – Children have access to a range of play-based activities, both indoors and outdoors.
  • Phonics – Daily phonics session, developing reading and writing skills.
  • Story and Songs – We enjoy a wide range of stories and songs.
  • Lunchtime – We eat together as a class in the hall, then play outside.
  • Adult directed session – More opportunities for maths, literacy or topic.
  • Child Initiated Learning.
  • Snack and story time.
  • Get ready for home.

We hope you have found this information useful, but should you require any further information, please do not hesitate to contact the school office and a member of the EYFS team will get back to you. Take a tour to see all that Reception has to offer!

Inclusion for all!

At Manland, we are committed to ensuring all children reach their full potential and become confident learners, ready to take the next steps in their journey to becoming a young adult. 
We understand that for children with a Special Educational Need (SEND), effective support and needs based provision is essential. We therefore work closely with the child and parents and carers to ensure we are assessing, planning, implementing and reviewing the needs of any child with a SEND in line with the SEND Code of Practice (January 2015).
We are an inclusive school and celebrate diversity. We understand that there is a lot of information around SEND and so if you would like any further clarification, please contact our Inclusion Leader, Mrs Kemp by calling the school office or emailing  Our Inclusion Leader oversees the day-to-day operation of the school’s SEND Policy and co-ordinates the provision for children with a SEND.

An Overview of Key Stage 1 (KS1)

As our children move from Reception into Year 1, we work hard to ensure a smooth transition for all pupils. The Year 1 teaching team continue to nurture the children’s interests and individual learning styles as the children get used to more whole class learning.


In both Year 1 and Year 2, the children continue to have daily phonics lessons in order to help them to embed their core reading and writing skills. Typically, English and Maths are taught in the morning and afternoon sessions are full of exciting and engaging lessons across the curriculum, including subjects such as Science, History and Art. During Key Stage 1, the children work towards a nativity performance, take part in the local Spring Music festival and attend a variety of sports events at Sir John Lawes, our local Secondary school.

An Overview of Key Stage 2 (KS2)

The Manland educational journey continues into Key Stage 2 (for children of ages 7 to 11) and the emphasis in this Key Stage is on taking on a greater range of responsibilities. This may be as simple as remembering to bring in P.E. bags on the correct days and ensuring homework is completed on time, or developing personal preferences for particular books and authors. 

The breadth of study increases in Key Stage 2. Children start the formal learning of French and are introduced to a range of coding languages in Computing. Children in Key Stage 2 have the opportunity to learn a wide range of instruments via peripatetic music tutors that teach on site and Year 3 benefit from whole class violin lessons that are taught as part of their music curriculum.

Upper Key Stage 2 children learn how to support younger children at play times as part of our ‘Play Leaders’ scheme and may represent the school and promote worthwhile change as part of the School Council. Year 6 children look forward to being elected as House Captains and leading on many key events in the school calendar such as Sports Day, House Charity Day, House Learning Days and inter-House competitions.

 We work hard to maintain links with our local secondary schools and have enjoyed assemblies and whole school competitions that have been led by St. George’s and Sir John Lawes’ schools. Above all, staff and children alike work hard to develop their understanding of an ever-changing world and aspire to develop the knowledge, skills and enthusiasm that will empower them for their next academic step.

Wider Curriculum

At Manland, children are able to take part in a wide range of clubs during and after school. These range from sports such as Netball, Basketball and Football to Art and Board Games club amongst many others.

We employ specialised staff to run many of these clubs and offer children the opportunity to take part in a range of competitive events. Children really look forward to our annual sports day, where they compete in a range of sporting activities. Parents enjoy coming along to see their children take part.
Children are offered two residential trips during their time at Manland. In Year 6, children go to PGL Caythorpe Court in Lincolnshire, where they take in a range of exciting outdoor activities such as archery, abseiling and climbing. We enrich our curriculum by organising termly House Learning days, where children learn with other year groups. Recent themes have been The Circus and Dance From Around the World. We also participate in various events throughout the year, such as Children in Need, Rotary Christmas Shoe boxes and World Book Day. In addition, each year children choose four charities for the school to support.
The House Captains plan and run fundraising activities for the children to take part in. We hope that you have found the information on this page useful, we understand it is difficult not being able to view the school at the moment. If you have any questions or would like any further information, please don’t hesitate to get in touch at
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