EYFS Policy

 

Intent

At Hillary Primary school, we believe that the Early Years Foundation Stage is crucial in securing solid foundations that children are going to continue to build upon. It is our intent that the children who enter our EYFS develop physically, verbally, cognitively and emotionally whilst embedding a positive attitude to school and learning.  We believe that all children deserve to be valued as an individual and we are passionate in allowing all children to achieve their full potential. We always begin by looking at the individual needs of our children and taking into account their different starting points. We then carefully develop our flexible EYFS Curriculum, which enables them to follow the path of their learning journey, at a point, that is suitable for their unique needs and stage of development.

We have five clear aims, which we want all children to achieve during their journey with us in the EYFS and beyond. They are:

  • Respectfulness and a love of learning: Children and adults respect each other, which helps to ensure children have a positive, confident attitude to learning.  They are both physically and emotionally ready to learn. 
  • Resourcefulness: Children show initiative, ask well thought out questions and are prepared to use a variety of strategies to learn.
  • Reflective: Children are curious, able and willing to learn from their mistakes and can describe their progress
  • Resilience: Children are prepared to persevere and stay involved in their learning, even when the process is challenging.
  • Reciprocity: Children are prepared to help each other and work as a team.

Implementation

At Hillary Primary School, we offer a curriculum which is broad and balanced and which builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills of all children, whatever their starting points. Four guiding principles shape our practice in the EYFS. 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 with teaching and support from adults, who respond to their individual interests and needs and help them to build their learning over time. Children benefit from a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and/or carers.
  • importance of learning and development. Children develop and learn at different rates.

There are seven areas of learning and development that shape the educational programmes in our setting. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected;

 The Prime areas:-

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development

 

The Specific Areas:-

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

 

The teaching of these areas of learning is practical and playful with support and challenge from adults in class sessions, small group sessions and working with individuals. There is a balance of adult-led and child initiated learning. Throughout all of these areas of learning and at the heart of our EYFS Curriculum are the “Characteristics of Effective Learning”. We strive to develop these key characteristics of “Playing and Learning”, “Active Learning” and “Thinking critically” in order to give the children the skills that they will continue to draw upon throughout their development. All of the crucial skills, knowledge and vocabulary that we teach are presented to the children throughout the year, which encompasses a range of topics, which are designed with their interests in mind. We recognise that all children come into our setting with varied experiences and all staff work hard to ensure that the learning opportunities provided widen their knowledge and understanding of the world, setting ambitious expectations for all children.

The aim of our EYFS curriculum is to develop a thirst and love for learning by:

  • Carefully planning sequences of activities that provide meaningful learning experiences, developing each child’s characteristics of learning.
  • Providing high quality interactions with adults that demonstrate and impact on the progress of all children.
  • Using high quality questioning and interactions to check understanding and address misconceptions.
  • Staff acting as role models to the children they teach in order for children to develop their own speaking and listening skills.
  • Ongoing formative assessments. These are used to inform the next steps of learning and meet individual needs.
  • Developing an effective and engaging environment that is set up so that children can access all areas of learning both inside and outside at any one time.
  • Providing activity-starting points for child initiated activities that enhance children’s learning and impact on progress.
  • Allowing children to be successful in their attempts at an activity and using effective feedback to help facilitate next steps in learning.
    • Developing an effective and engaging environment that is set up so that children can access all areas of learning both inside and outside at any one time.
    • Providing activity-starting points for child initiated activities that enhance children’s learning and impact on progress.
    • Allowing children to be successful in their attempts at an activity and using effective feedback to help facilitate next steps in learning.

 

Impact

Children demonstrate high levels of engagement in activities, developing their speaking and listening skills, enabling them to access more areas of the learning and communicate to both adults and children. Children develop skills across all areas of the curriculum including literacy, mathematics and physical development using these in different ways. A high proportion of children make good/ rapid progress where the majority have very low starting points.

A range of high quality texts are linked to the curriculum themes where children foster a ‘love of reading’ and not only develop reading skills but also tackle the vast vocabulary gap evident among the families which we serve.

Children develop their characteristics of learning and are able to apply their knowledge to a range of situations making links and explaining their ideas and understanding. Children are confident to take risks and discuss their successes and failures with adults drawing on their experiences to improve or adjust what they are doing.

Parental Engagement positively impacts children’s learning as well as developing their own skills to enable them to support their child.

                                                 
                

 

Our long-term plans are not an exhaustive list but are designed to give a brief overview of our learning. We regularly review and adapt them to reflect the children's specific interests/needs.