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What is the Early Years Foundation Stage?

The EYFS is the stage of learning is when your child attends a setting or childminders home between birth and the age of five. They remain in this stage of learning until the end of the Reception Year in school.

The EYFS Framework describes how Early Years Practitioners should work with children and their families to support their development and learning.


What are the EYFS principles?

Children develop quickly in the early years, and early years practitioners aim to do all they can to help children have the best possible start in life. Children have a right to provision which enables them to develop their personalities, talents and abilities irrespective of ethnicity, culture or religion, home language, family background, learning difficulties, disabilities or gender. The EYFS guidance helps adults to understand and support each individual child’s development pathway.


The EYFS Curriculum is based on four important principles:

  • A Unique Child
    Every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
  • Positive Relationships
    Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
  • Enabling Environments
    Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents/carers.
  • Learning & Development
    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.

What is in the EYFS Curriculum?

Practitioners teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across the prime and specific areas of learning and development. These areas are separated into different aspects. The areas are:

Personal, Social & Emotional Development (PSED) Making relationships
Self-confidence and self-awareness
Managing feelings and behaviour
Physical Development (PD) Moving and handling
Health and self-care
Communication and Language (CAL) Listening and attention
Literacy Reading
Mathematics Number
Shape, space and measure
Understanding the World People and Communities
The World
Expressive Arts and Design Exploring and using media and materials
Being imaginative


Through these areas, Early Years Practitioners foster the characteristics of effective early learning which support children throughout the learning life:

  • Playing and exploring
  • Active learning
  • Creating and thinking critically

Children with in the Early Years Foundation Stage are the most successful when parents and practitioners work together. With this in mind we use an online learning journal called Tapestry. We upload pictures, observations and videos, celebrating your child’s achievements from that day and hope that you will do the same at home.


Assessment in EYFS

On-going formative assessment is at the heart of effective early years practice. The EYFS requires early years practitioners to review children’s progress and share a summary with parents at two points:

in the prime areas between the ages of 24 and 36 months

and at the end of the EYFS in the EYFS Profile. (Summer Term of the Reception Year)

Practitioners will be watching and supporting your child in their development throughout their time in Early Years. They will use this assessment to help plan activities which are relevant to your child’s own growth and development. These assessments will be shared with you a various key points.

If you would like to find out more information about Hatchlings FS unit please call the school office or pop in and see us in action.