What is the Early Years Foundation Stage?
Welcome to the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), this is how the Government and Early Year’s professionals describe the time in your child’s life between birth and age 5.
This is a very important stage as it helps your child get ready for school as well as preparing them for their future learning and successes. From when your child is born up until the age of 5, their early years’ experience should be happy, active, exciting, fun and secure; and support their development, care and learning needs.
Early Years Foundation Stage
The revised EYFS has seven areas of learning:
- Personal Social and Emotional Development
- Physical Development
- Communication and Language
These three areas are the main focus in Early Years at our school as these skills are fundamental for our children and the starting point for all other areas of learning.
- Understanding of the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
These areas are also covered throughout the week in a range of activities.
Characteristics of Effective Learning
Through all the areas of learning, children will develop the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’ which are:
- Playing and Exploring
- Active Learning
- Creating and thinking critically
These characteristics will reinforce their learning and development and will helps us to support your child to remain an effective and motivated learner.
We make sure that each child is treated uniquely; they have the ability to develop positive relationships and provide them with an enabling environment in order for children to learn and develop.
Personal Social and Emotional Development (PSED)
By creating a positive approach to learning and finding out about the world around them children are able to develop confidence in themselves and their ability to do things. It is important that they value their own achievements. In a safe and fun environment children will develop an awareness of others and learn to play with their peers. In turn children will make friendships and form good relationships with the adults they are working with.
Communication and Language (C&L)
Our main aim in this area is to develop the children’s communication skills: through the use of signs, symbols, communication aids and vocalisations. All work is based around the children’s experiences and this allows them to develop their knowledge and understanding as well as developing confidence to talk about their own experience. We work on improving children’s concentration and listening skills.
Physical Development (PD)
Your child will have the opportunity to develop all the important early physical skills that will enable them to become more independent. Through exploration, play, and all things fun children will improve their skills of coordination, control, and movement. They will be supported to use all their senses to connect to their environment. We will also work on personal skills such as dressing and personal hygiene (where appropriate) enabling further independence.
Reading is an important aspect of your child’s life, through our teaching of Read, Write, Inc. and our encouragement of books children are able to develop their vocabulary and language. Children will also learn the letter sounds in order to decode words and blend them, these are the two main skills required in learning to read. Children are also encouraged to mark make as much as they can, this means that they will develop the fine motor skills necessary to write.
During our Mathematics lesson your child will develop their mathematical ideas to help them problem solve and make decisions. The children also develop an awareness of numbers and counting through songs and games. We develop an awareness of shape and space through a variety of activities.
Understanding the World (UtW)
We will help children to become more aware of themselves and their families, their environment and their culture. We take trips out to the local area as well as further afield. We explore and investigate a wide range of materials and textures and how to use tools, as well as looking at different objects and toys and how they work. They learn to choose – and use – the right tool for a task. They will also gain an understanding of technology including computers, how to use them and what they can help us to do.
Expressive Arts and Design (EA&D)
Through the use of paint, materials, music, dance, words, stories and role-play children learn to express their ideas, feelings and preferences.
You can find the Early Years Foundation Stage, which includes the early learning goals at www.foundationyears.org.uk. The foundation year’s website also includes a range of resources and contacts.