Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

Welcome to Early Years! At Slaley First School, our Nursery and Reception children play and learn together in our Early Years Foundation Stage Unit. Our aim for our Early Years children is to give them lots of meaningful, hands-on, authentic experiences that will enable them to become enthusiastic and empowered lifelong learners.

In the Early Years we plan around and follow the children’s prior knowledge, needs and interests as much as possible. However, we also take care in planning exciting cross-curricular topics which will introduce the children to new experiences, concepts and vocabulary. We keep these open-ended to allow us to be led by what motivates and interests the children.

Our 3-year topic cycle ensures that the children experience a broad range of themes and topics in their time in Early Years without repeating any of these, while our Long Term Plan gives an overview of our intended learning outcomes for each phase of children’s learning. Of course, we are responsive practitioners and work hard to ensure that teaching and learning is tailored to each child’s individual next steps.

Our Medium Term (half-termly) curriculum maps give further information about what each topic entails and the skills and experiences we aim to deliver and develop.

We have designed our curriculum to carefully ensure it meets the requirements of the 2021 EYFS Statutory Framework as well as catering for the needs, interests and abilities of each of our children. We aim to ensure children make a strong start to their education; maximising their potential and being ready for their next steps in learning.

Children learn best in an environment where they feel valued, safe and stimulated and we develop positive relationships with the children which are built on mutual respect and, of course, sharing lots of fun and laughter! We also endeavour to build close links with families to ensure the best outcomes for each child and celebrate their achievements both in and out of school. We use the EYFS360 app to involve parents in their child’s learning journey and parents are welcome to share their own observations from home.