Giving the children the best possible start to their education is our aim in Foundation Stage.
We follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) framework which sets standards for the learning, development and care of children from birth to 5 years old. It gives children the wide range of knowledge and skills that provide a secure foundation for future progress through school and their life to come.
There are seven areas of learning and development that form the EYFS curriculum.
Three areas are particularly crucial for building children’s capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These three areas are known as the prime areas;
- Communication and language;
- Physical development; and
- Personal, social and emotional development.
There are also four specific areas through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied. These are:
- Understanding the world; and
- Expressive arts and design.
Teachers consider the individual needs, interests and stage of development of each child in their care, and use this information to provide a challenging and inspiring curriculum for all children. The EYFS is a play based curriculum, where practitioners use a mix of adult-led and child-initiated activities each day.
Underpinning everything we do in the early years are the characteristics of effective learning, which are;
- Playing and exploring – children use all their senses to investigate and explore
- Active learning- children concentrate and keep on trying
- Creating and thinking critically-children develop their own ideas and problem solving skills.
Observation and assessment
Ongoing assessment is an integral part of the learning and development process in the EYFS. It involves practitioners observing children throughout the day to assess progress and achievement across all areas of learning and development. We use an online learning journey called Tapestry to record this learning. We have very strong partnerships with parents/carers and this learning journal is shared with parents online. Parents are then also able to add photos, videos and text from home at any point during the year.
At the end of the EYFS teachers complete an EYFS profile summarising a child’s knowledge, understanding and abilities in all areas of the curriculum. This is shared with both parents and Year One teachers, to support a smooth transition into the next year group.