A guide to Early Years Foundation Stage

What is the Early Years Foundation Stage?

Welcome to the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), which is how the Government and early years professionals describe the time in your child’s life between birth and age 5. This is a very important stage as it helps your child get ‘school ready’, as well as preparing them for their future learning and successes. From when your child is born up until the age of 5, we strongly believe that their early years experience should be happy, active, exciting, fun and secure; whilst supporting their development, care and learning needs. In order for children to acquire a deep level of learning, it is important to ensure they have opportunities to build memory prompts, enabling them recall things which they have learnt, effectively continuing to build their knowledge as they progress throughout their education.

What is the EYFS Framework – why do we have one?

Firstly, the framework sets out:

  • The legal welfare requirements which we follow to keep your child safe and promote their welfare.
  • The 7 areas of learning and development which define examples of your child’s play and activities as they learn new skills and knowledge.
  • Each area of learning is broken down into three age groups: birth to three years, 4 years and 5 years, we use the guidance along with our own professional judgement, to assess the progress your child is making.
  • Early Learning Goals are expected levels which your child should reach, usually by the end of their reception year. It is important to remember that every child is an individual and will progress at different rates, some may be extremely confident working within this goal, some may reach it, whilst some will still be working towards it into Year One. It is important  to note that in order to reach their full potential, your child  will need your support at home with learning tasks, conversations reading and activities. 
  • In the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) we support your child to achieve their seventeen Early Learning Goals (ELG) whilst developing their Characteristics of Effective Learning (COEL). These are an essential foundation for children to become successful, well-rounded and eager learners throughout their lives.

What does it mean for me as a parent?

We ensure that your child has a safe and happy learning environment by following the welfare standards set out which include: the numbers of staff required in a nursery, child to adult ratios, and things like administering medicines and carrying out risk assessments. At Oakwood we value providing quality learning for our children and by clicking the link, you can see our most recent Ofsted report. 

How my child will be learning?

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Framework explains how and what your child will be learning to support their healthy development. They will be learning skills, acquiring new knowledge and demonstrating their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development.

There are three prime areas of learning which are:

  • Communication and language;
  • Physical development; and
  • Personal, social and emotional development.

These prime areas are those most essential for your child’s healthy development and future learning.

As children grow, these prime areas of learning help them to develop skills in four specific areas. These are: 

  • Literacy;
  • Mathematics;
  • Understanding the world; and
  • Expressive arts and design.