Children must have access to a rich learning environment which provides them with the opportunities and conditions in which to flourish in all aspects of their development. It should provide balance across the areas of learning. Integral to this is an ethos which respects each child as an individual and which values children’s efforts, interests and purposes as instrumental to successful learning. (DFES, EYFS Handbook 2014)
Aims And Objectives
The main aim of the EYFS is to provide children with a place where they can grow and develop that is secure, safe and happy. This will give them the foundations that they need to successfully learn in their own individual ways as they move throughout the school. Children are encouraged to learn by being actively involved and through play, discovering as they go.
The EYFS is split into seven different areas, three prime areas and four specific areas. “Prime areas are fundamental, work together, and are moved through to support development in all other areas.” “Specific areas include essential skills and knowledge for children to participate successfully in society.” (DFES 2012) As well as the subject content are the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’ (playing and exploring, active learning, creating and thinking critically), which link through all areas of learning.
Personal, Social And Emotional Development
This strand of the curriculum is made up of, Making Relationships, Self-confidence and Self-awareness, and Managing feelings and behaviour. Pupils in the EYFS work in a caring and nurturing environment. Through a safe and secure setting they are able to develop their relationships and confidence. Children have daily circle time sessions which allow them excellent opportunities for developing friendships.
Physical development is spilt into two areas – Moving and Handling as well as Health and Self-care. Through this strand of the curriculum children learn to become as independent as they are physically able. Children are encouraged to develop physical awareness through rebound, soft play, tacpac and swimming. Fine motor control is also encouraged through sensory manipulation.
Communication And Language
This is divided into three areas –Listening and Attention, Speaking and Understanding. EYFS children learn in a total communication environment. They are encouraged to respond in different ways that are appropriate to their abilities. Staff work closely with SALT to ensure that all children’s communication needs are met in the best way for them.
The Literacy strand of the EYFS curriculum is divided into two parts, Reading and Writing. Children access these with a multi-sensory approach. They use the writing aspect of the curriculum to develop their fine motor skills through messy play, massage and more structured writing activities for those who are able. RWI and visual phonics is used across the EYFS and allows pupils a way into learning to read.
This area is again split into two categories –Number and Shape, Space and Measure. Pupils experience mathematics in everyday contexts and problems as well as having specific maths sessions and challenges.
Understanding The World
This aspect of the curriculum encourages children to explore the world around them and they way that it works. It has three separate areas –People and Communities, The World, and Technology.
Expressive Arts And Design
Art and Design encompasses both ‘Exploring and using media and materials’ and ‘Being imaginative’. Pupils have access to creative materials and can use these as is appropriate to their needs. Music and singing plays a big part in the structure of the EYFS day as children find it a great way of learning.
Assessment And Recording
Assessment and tracking of pupils is done in EYFS through the use of the EYFS Stepping Stones on the Solar program. Children are baselined within 6 weeks of starting in the EYFS and their progress is continually monitored and recorded on Solar with evidence to show how they have progressed. As well as being assessed on the Solar stepping stones children’s progress is also evidenced through their learning journey which is a folder of evidence showing their developments and achievements across the EYFS. All class staff contribute to their Solar and learning journey evidence.
COMPREHENSIVE DOCUMENTATION IS HELD BY THE SUBJECT COORDINATOR WHO, FOR THIS SUBJECT IS RACHEL SHEPPARD.