Early Years Foundation Stage
Early Years Curriculum Statement
“The EYFS is about how children learn, as well as what they learn. Children need opportunities to develop their own play and independent exploration. This is enjoyable and motivating. They also need adults to ‘scaffold’ their learning by giving them just enough help to achieve something they could not do independently. Helping children to think, discuss and plan ahead is important, like gathering the materials they need to make a den before they start building. These are ways of helping children to develop the Characteristics of Effective Learning.” Department for Education, Development Matters (2021)
The Early Years Foundation Stage is the period of education from birth to five years old.
At The Oaks Primary School we intend to provide our children with the best start to allow them to become happy, well-rounded and confident individuals. We aim to instil a love of learning from the very first day they join our family.
Here at The Oaks, it is our intention for each child to experience the seven areas of learning, both prime and specific. Learning experiences are carefully planned by our skilled staff to support communication and language development.
We believe that all children deserve the right to an education full of memorable experiences that develop children’s sense of curiosity and risk taking. We pride ourselves on providing children with everyday experiences as well as “shiny” experiences to ensure that each child, no matter their starting points, has the same bank of experiences to draw upon.
We strive to work alongside our parents and wider school community to encourage our children to develop into resilient and independent learners who thrive in school to reach their full potential as they continue on their learning journey with us. Part of our ethos is to encourage parents and carers to be actively involved in their child’s learning journey. This will be achieved through the online learning platform “Class Dojo” where parents can complete learning activities with their child, or upload photos of experiences they have had at home. Parents will be invited into the classroom each half term to join in activities with their child, and review their learning journey which they will be invited to comment in as well.
At The Oaks we recognise that children enter our Reception class with different starting points, so we aim to plan teaching and learning moments to address this. We assess children’s prior learning, knowledge and skills quickly upon them beginning Reception with us, and then provide purposeful learning opportunities tailored to the individual children.
In the EYFS, we aim to embody the school’s values, vision and ethos. We promote the school rules of Ready, Respectful and Responsible. We embed values that the children can use across all areas of the curriculum.
At The Oaks, we provide a safe and stimulating learning environment for the children to explore independently. Children learn most effectively when they are healthy, safe and secure. We focus on building strong and stable relationships between the children and the adults in the classroom.
Each half term, the children will cover a new topic or theme of learning based upon the main text they are covering in Literacy through the Read to Write programme of learning. We “hook” the children in with exciting resources and activities, and then tailor the teaching to the cohort’s interests, wants and needs.
Here at The Oaks, we deliver the prime and specific areas of learning through a range of adult directed and child initiated activities, both indoor and outdoor. In the EYFS we recognise the value of both the indoor and outdoor classroom, and the different opportunities that each can provide. We provide a safe and stimulating outdoor learning environment that allows children to have different experiences in the indoor classroom. The children learn to care for the world around them, take risks they are comfortable with, and develop gross motor skills.
Here at The Oaks, we follow the Read Write Inc phonics programme that delivers systematic, synthetic phonics through a carefully sequenced series of lessons. The children are taught a phonics session daily. They are assessed every six weeks to ensure that teaching is correctly matched to their current knowledge.
Throughout their time with us in Reception, the children will be assessed against Development Matters, Birth to 5 Matters, and the Early Learning Goals. End of year assessment will take place in the Summer Term and are used to inform the Year 1 team of the cohort’s strengths and weaknesses.
Parents evenings take place twice a year (in the Autumn and Spring terms) and reports are sent out in the Summer Term. This provides the teachers and parents with an opportunity to discuss each individual child, and what their next steps are.
The EYFS team work closely with the SENDCO to quickly assess and identify any children who may require additional support. We use an online system called Provision Map that allows teachers to set specific goals for children needing additional support. Parents have access to this and can comment on their child’s progress towards these targets at home.
Our EYFS team works closely alongside local nurseries to build strong relationships and partnerships with them. This allows the transition for children to take place smoothly. Members of the EYFS team will spend time with the children in their current setting to allow their faces to become familiar. The EYFS team will host an evening session where they explain what the EYFS is, and how this looks in our school. Parents and children will also be invited into our setting for a “Stay and Play” session where they can explore both the indoor and outdoor classroom. This allows parents an additional opportunity to ask any questions they may have. The main class teacher and EYFS lead will then conduct home visits with the parents and children during the Summer Term. The children will have a settling-in period in September where they will do just a morning session, and then stay till after lunch, so they can build up to doing full days.
During the Summer Term, members of the Year 1 team will start spending some time in the Reception Classroom such as reading the class a story, dismissing the children to allow parents to get used to the new teaching team and plan activities for the children to complete for their new classroom. Throughout the Summer Term, the Reception class team will be working hard to prepare the children for Key Stage One.
By the end of Reception, all children will have experienced a curriculum that provides enriching, exciting and inspiring learning opportunities. This will be achieved through visitors, hands on experiences, adult directed tasks and child initiated activities. We aim for the children to be confident enough to ask questions about the world around them. Children will be able to make links, and apply the knowledge and skills they have been taught.
Children will be resilient, and will be able to approach problems using different resources and methods. They will not fear making a mistake as this will be seen as another opportunity to learn.
Children will be successful learners and will be ready to undertake the transition to Key Stage One.
All observations of children are put together in their Learning Journey which is a scrap book containing all of their key moments from the Reception Year.