Early Years Foundation Stage
At St Ethelbert’s Primary School and Nursery we believe in providing a secure foundation for future learning and development for our children. We want our children to be happy, confident life-long learners.
Our EYFS curriculum allows children to develop interpersonal skills, build resilience and become creative thinkers. We aim to provide a fun, secure, challenging and rich educational environment that enables each individual to thrive. Reception and Nursery work closely with each other to ensure continuity and consistency across the foundation stage.
Our Mission statement ‘Learning, Achieving and Growing together with Jesus’ is at the heart of everything we do. We place a strong emphasis on the religious, spiritual, moral and cultural development of all our pupils.
We ensure pupil have a safe and stimulating environment in which to learn and explore and aim to foster children’s individual wants, needs and interests in order to enable them to get the most out of their experiences. Our aim in the EYFS is to build strong foundations rooted in academic success as well as moral and spiritual development, so that ultimately our pupils can be successful, go on to be active citizens of society and be happy, curious life-long learners.
Children have lots of opportunities to facilitate their own learning through carefully resourced provision areas and adults support children through high quality interactions that challenge thinking and extend learning. Our curriculum is designed around the child. By giving learning a purpose and application, skills for reading, writing and solving mathematical problems will become meaningful and more desirable.
Through play-based learning and topics we endeavour to provide each child with a range of opportunities which stimulate their creativity and support their development based on their likes and interests. We value the importance of the outdoor environment in order to enable children to develop their thinking, problem solving and collaborative working skills.
At St Ethelbert’s Primary School and Nursery, we follow the Early Years Foundation Stage framework. This is made up of four overriding principles which our early year’s education is based upon:
Unique Child – Every child is unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
Positive Relationships – Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
Enabling Environments – Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and carers.
Learning and Development – Children develop and learn in different ways. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early year’s provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.
Areas of learning and development
There are seven areas of learning and development. The areas are: -
Personal, Social and Emotional Development – involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
Communication and Language – involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
Physical Development – involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.
As children grow and make progress in the prime areas, this will help them to naturally develop skills within the four specific areas. These are:
Literacy – the early teaching of literacy involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children are given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest.
Mathematics – the early teaching of mathematics involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and describing shapes, spaces, and measures.
Understanding the World – this involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
Expressive Arts and Design – this involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.
We follow the Read Write Inc. Phonics programme that teaches children to read and write, at the same time as developing their spoken language, vocabulary, grammar and spelling. Phonics is taught daily in small differentiated groups. All phonics sessions are planned for by the teaching staff and all staff have received up to date training. Children are given the opportunity to consolidate their phonics skills through continuous provision activities around the classroom. We provide lots of fun opportunities for children to listen to and contribute to rhymes, stories and poems, exploring words and meaning.
Here are some links for further information about the Read Write Inc Phonics programme that we follow.
We want each child to get the best possible start in life and to be ready to thrive in KS1. At St Ethelbert’s Primary School and Nursery, we do this by ensuring ongoing assessment is an integral part of the learning process. Staff observe pupils and these observations are used to plan next steps and future lessons. Baseline assessments are carried out in the Advent term to allow us to monitor and track pupils progress right from the start.
Using 2Simple, each child has a Learning Journey where assessments are recorded and evidenced. This Learning Journey is shared with parents each term. Parents are also invited to termly Parents evenings to discuss pupil progress.
At the end of EYFS, staff complete the EYFS profile for each child. Pupils are assessed against the 17 early learning goals. As a team, we carry out regular internal moderation sessions and also ensure that staff attend external meetings and training to ensure that we feel confident with our judgements and that these judgements are consistent with a range of other settings. By monitoring assessment procedures regularly, we can effectively demonstrate what learning is taking place and how each child is progressing in all seven areas of the EYFS curriculum.
The EYFS staff are committed to raising standards by attending relevant CPD and ensuring each child at St Ethelbert’s has the best start on their school journey.
EYFS Lead and Class Teacher – Miss Harper
Nursery Teacher – Miss Barlow
Nursery Teacher – Mrs Martin
Reception Teacher – Miss D’Arcy
Learning Support Assistant – Miss Dilley
Learning Support Assistant – Mrs Ulan