From September 2008 there was a new guidance set in place that covered all children from birth to five years called the ‘The Early Years Foundation Stage’ (EYFS) that supports development of each individual child and focuses around the child’s interests. This gives guidance to staff to support individual children and ensures every child is making progress to reach their full potential in learning and development whilst also receiving the best possible care. In September 2012 this was then revised to further children’s development adding a progress check for all children aged 2 years.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is broken down into four themes each with their own principles. These are;
Every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is strong partnership between practitioners and parents and carers.
These three themes together will then achieve the fourth theme;
Children develop and learn in different ways. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities. Practitioners teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across the prime and specific areas of learning and development.
The EYFS is the guidance for the learning, development and care for all children on a very personal and individual level. All children will be encouraged and supported throughout their learning and development by their key person and they will have individual plans that consider their needs, interests and their stage of development. This information will help to plan a challenging and enjoyable experience across all areas of Learning and Development. These Principles along with the Welfare Standard requirements ensure our setting is compliant with the laws and requirements set out by the government for settings to care for children.
Areas of Learning and Development
There are seven areas of learning and development that must shape educational programmes in early years settings. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These three areas, the prime areas, are:
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 ability.
Providers must also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied. The specific areas are:
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 activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.
Each child progresses at their own rate with the Early Learning Goals for each area of learning being the end target. At the end of each term you will receive an ‘All About Me’ giving you information about your child’s progress and possible lines of development.
You will also receive weekly observations by the excellent system we use to record the child's progress. The app 'Tapestry' lets us snap the moments when your child is learning a new skill and gather information on the go, this lets us and you record this in their file along with linking to the EYFS. Click here for more information on Tapestry.
(Early Years Foundation Stage)
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