Early Years Foundation Stage
The Early Years or the Foundation Stage as it is also known is the basis upon which children build the rest of their lives. It refers to children from birth to the end of the academic year in which a child has their fifth birthday.
The school works in line with ‘Early years foundation stage (EYFS) statutory framework’ (2021).
We aim to ensure that all children are welcomed into a caring, happy, secure environment. We encourage children to observe, enquire and learn through an active and practical approach. We are committed to providing equality of opportunity for every child and adult, an approach shared and supported by everyone in our school community. All the work we do at Compton All Saints’ is underpinned by our C of E foundation and our three key values: compassion, gratitude and honesty.
Our main aims are:
- To meet the needs of the whole child: - socially, intellectually, emotionally, physically, spiritually and aesthetically - and to ensure a smooth transition from home to school.
- To develop an effective partnership between parents, carers and school.
- To establish and maintain links with settings providing pre-compulsory school provision.
- To support learning through using a physical environment that has appropriate space, facilities and equipment. This environment will be organised with due regard to health and safety.
- To maintain a child-centred focus and ensure that children feel safe, develop confidence and experience enjoyment in learning.
- To ensure early identification of children’s particular needs through assessment and to provide appropriate intervention and support.
- To have clear aims and objectives for learning experiences.
- To provide a rich and stimulating curriculum that can be accessed by all and that takes account of children’s individual interests and achievements.
- To provide developmentally appropriate activities and to set high expectations for learning.
- For children to develop a sense of achievement and intrinsic motivation through learning which is pleasurable.
- To provide first hand experiences as an aid to learning.
- To encourage children to think and talk about their learning and to develop self-control and independence and creativity.
- To use play and talk as media for learning.
- To give appropriate periods of time for learning through sustained involvement in concentrated activity.
Play in the Foundation Stage
We regard structured play, both inside and outside the classroom, as an important part of the Foundation Stage. Children learn by doing and when a child is actively engaged in a play situation they become intrinsically motivated. This is an opportunity for children to learn a variety of skills, concepts, knowledge and attitudes.
Resources will be accessible to children and clearly labelled to encourage independence.
We aim to provide a structured play programme, which will:-
- Be stimulating and fun.
- Provide opportunities for extended learning.
- Encourage trial and error learning.
- Encourage exploration and questioning.
- Develop problem-solving skills.
- Develop language acquisition through adult intervention.
- Allow an outlet for emotional needs.
- Give children opportunities to develop their learning with a focus on Early Learning Goals.
- Be an opportunity to practise newly acquired skills and concepts.
Children’s attainment through the Early Years
This is evaluated through observation and assessment of different areas and characteristics of learning. They are:
- Three prime areas of learning (communication and language, physical development and personal, social and emotional development)
- Four specific areas of learning: literacy, mathematics, understanding the world, expressive arts and design.
- Three key learning characteristics: playing and exploring, active learning, creating and thinking critically.
Prime areas of learning
Personal, Social and Emotional development
Children learn how to work, play, co-operate with others, function as a group and express themselves in acceptable ways. Independence in learning and personal routines are nurtured.
A positive self-image is reinforced, concentration and perseverance is encouraged. Sensitivity towards others and their environment is encouraged.
Communication and Language
This is concerned with developing children’s competence in talking and listening; developing these skills is also key to becoming good readers and writers.
In a range of situations and in small and large groups children learn to listen attentively to stories, rhymes and information presented to them by both adults and other children. They talk about their personal experiences and use these in role-play, responding to what others say.
Children learn positive attitudes towards a healthy and active way of life, including making healthy choices in relation to food. They develop physical control, mobility, awareness of space and manipulative skills in indoor and outdoor environments.
The specific areas of learning
A love of books is encouraged and children are given access to a wide range of rich reading material. The school implements a structured approach to the teaching of phonics through a government approved synthetic phonics scheme. The children are given a wide variety of tasks that enable them to practise early reading and writing skills.
Experiences are presented to provide the foundations for numeracy. The main focus is on achievement through practical activities and on using and understanding language in the development of simple mathematical ideas. These include recognising and counting numbers, addition, subtraction and describing shapes, spaces and measures.
Understanding the World
Children develop an understanding of their environment, other people and features of the natural and man-made world. They learn to talk, explore and select materials and equipment, including information technology.
Expressive Arts and Design
This area of learning is focussed on the development of children’s imagination and their ability to communicate and express ideas and feelings in a creative way through art, music, dance, stories and imaginative play.