Early Years Foundation Stage (Nursery and Reception)
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) makes a crucial contribution to children’s early development and learning. We provide children with a rich variety of teaching and learning experiences that are appropriate to their needs. EYFS is about developing key learning skills such as listening, speaking, concentrating, persistence and learning to work and co-operate with others.
The ways in which the child engages with other people and their environment – playing and exploring, active learning, and creating and thinking critically – underpin learning and development across all areas and support the child to remain an effective and motivated learner.
The seven areas of learning and development in the EYFS are organised into the Prime Areas and Specific Areas:
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Communication and Language Development
- Physical Development
- Understanding of the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
We recognise the value of play as the principle and most effective method of learning. Play allows for discovery, creativity and problem solving. It is purposeful, absorbing, open-ended and enables children to communicate with each other. It is the vehicle by which we gain access to the curriculum.
The outdoor environment is also a very special part of the EYFS curriculum. As such it is carefully planned for and available each day. Learning in the EYFS follows the needs, experiences and interests of individual children. Learning is mainly through active, play based activities indoors and outdoors all the year round.
Observation and assessment is integral to EYFS practice and staff will spend time observing children to identify their needs, interests, progress and next steps. Staff use a range of systems including photographs, post-it notes and samples of work to record children’s learning and development.
During the Reception year more emphasis is placed on developing and applying literacy and maths skills so that children are ready to learn in Key Stage 1. At the end of the Reception year children are assessed against the Early Learning Goals (ELGs) and a best fit judgement is made as to whether children are ‘emerging’, ‘expected’ or ‘exceeding’ against the ELGs.