The Early Years Curriculum
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Framework, sets out the standards for development, learning and care of children from birth to five. It is important that all children are given the opportunity to experience the best possible start to their education. We need to ensure that our children enter school having established solid foundations on which they can build. Children will start in our Nursery Class having had a range of different experiences. Within the Nursery Class and Reception Year, learning experiences of the highest quality are planned, considering children’s needs and achievements and the range of learning experiences that will help them make progress. Play is one of the main ways in which our children learn. It helps to build their self-confidence and independence, enables them to feel good about themselves and develop their social skills and imagination. It also teachers them self-expression. Our Early Years environment provide activities and resources to help engage, encourage and develop our children’s learning in many different ways. It is important that learning is fun at this stage and children explore and experiment with different ways of doing things. Through play, our staff observe children and carefully intervene where appropriate, to build on and develop the characteristics of effective learning. Through positive relationships, a rich environment, and thoughtful interactions, our children are encouraged and supported to take risks, explore new experiences and be active learners who persevere, concentrate and are proud of their goals.
The EYFS sets out the following seven areas of learning to be used for planning learning and development opportunities; all areas are important and inter-connected. They fall into two groups; The Prime and the Specific areas for learning.
The Prime Areas
These are recognised as essential areas for your child’s healthy development. They form an essential foundation for children’s future learning ability and are a key focus for Early Years learning.
• Communication and language,
• Physical development
• Personal, social and emotional development.
The Specific Areas
As children consolidate skills in the Prime areas, they are able help to develop knowledge and skills in these four specific areas.
• Understanding the world
• Expressive arts and design.
- Communication and Language Development 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 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.
- Personal, Social and Emotional 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.
- Literacy Development involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest.
- 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 to describe shapes, spaces, and measures.
- Understanding the World 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 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 different ways.