Early Years Foundation Stage

About the Early Years Foundation Stage

The EYFS, came into force in 2008 and has since been further revised. The EYFS sets certain standards that all early years carers and providers must meet to ensure that every child learns, develops and is kept safe and healthy during those very important formative years.

The core element of EYFS is to instil quality teaching in all Ofsted registered settings throughout a child’s early years to ensure ‘school readiness’.

The EYFS is based on a ‘principled approach’ around four guiding themes which we integrate into our daily routine with your children.

  •  A unique child: every child is an individual with their own character who is constantly evolving and learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured
  • Positive relationships: children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships underlying the importance of establishing an effective key person system
  • Enabling environments: children learn and develop well in an environment that responds to their individual needs and experiences where there is strong partnership between parents and carers
  • Learning and development: it is important for carers to understand the importance of developmental change and learning processes the children experience in the first five years of their lives; whilst acknowledging that children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates

Learning and Development

There are seven key areas of learning which are split between prime and specific areas of learning and development.

What we call the ‘Prime Areas’ reflect the key skills and competencies all children need to develop and learn effectively so they are fully prepared for school. The specific areas are borne out of the prime areas and provide important contexts for learning.

Prime Areas Specific Areas
Personal, Social and Emotional Development Literacy
  1. Making relationships
  2. Self-confidence and self awareness
  3. Managing feelings and behaviour
  1. Reading
  2. Writing
Physical Development Mathematics
  1. Moving and handling
  2. Health and self-care
  1. Numbers
  2. Shapes, space and measurement
Communication and Language Understanding the World
  1. Listening and attention
  2. Understanding
  3. Speaking
  1. People and communities
  2. The World
  3. Technology
Expressive Arts and Design
  1. Exploring and using media and materials
  2. Being imaginative

Carers working with the youngest children are expected to focus strongly on the prime areas, which form the basis for successful learning in the other four specific areas.

The balance will shift towards a more equal focus on all areas of learning as children grow in confidence and ability within the prime areas.