Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum
EYFS Long Term Planning and Progression of Skills
Our Vision for the Early Years Foundation Stage Children
Our vision for the EYFS children at Longwick C of E School is that they are happy and engaged as we know that children learn best when they are happy and involved in their learning. We support children to grow in confidence and independence, develop their curiosity about the world around them, encourage them to try new activities to develop their resilience and show empathy towards adults and their peers. Developing the children’s social and communication skills is a priority within our daily routines. Our aim is to ignite the children’s love of learning through providing positive relationships, child-initiated play opportunities and adult-led interactions, within an enabling and well-resourced environment. We provide enriching opportunities which build on the children’s prior knowledge, skills and experiences, enabling them to flourish in an ever-changing world.
Our Intent, Implementation and Impact for the Early Years Foundation Stage
The Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage sets the standards for learning, development and care for children from birth to 5 years. We have one Reception class and are keen to develop close links with our feeder nurseries and pre-schools to ensure the children have a smooth transition into school.
In the EYFS at Longwick C of E School, our curriculum is designed to build on the children’s prior learning, knowledge, skills and experiences to provide motivating first-hand learning opportunities which encourage the children to build resilience, confidence and independence. Every child is recognised as a unique individual. We celebrate and welcome differences within our school, whilst encouraging the children to strive to be the best that they can be within our supportive and nurturing Christian community. We work in partnership with parents, carers and other settings to provide the best possible start at Longwick Church of England Combined School, ensuring each individual reaches their full potential from their various starting points. By the end of the Reception year, our intent is to ensure that all children make at least good progress from their starting points and are equipped with the skills and knowledge to have a smooth transition into Year 1.
- Provide a safe, secure and nurturing environment where children develop effective relationships with adults and their peers.
- Offer extended periods of play and sustained shared thinking
- Develop the children’s confidence and skills to make decisions, self-evaluate and make connections with their learning.
- Understand and follow the children’s interests, providing opportunities within our EYFS curriculum to support, consolidate and deepen their learning.
- Identify gaps in the children’s learning to maximise their chances of achieving the Early Learning Goals and making expected progress.
- Create a stimulating learning environment which supports and engages the children with their learning.
- Provide opportunities which support the children to work towards meeting the Early Learning Goals by the end of the Foundation Stage.
- Ensure children make at least good progress from their starting points.
- Develop smooth and supportive transition between nursery/ pre-school and school as well as the transition from Reception into Year 1 (KS1).
- Broaden children’s experiences through providing opportunities to try new things and take on challenges.
- Build positive relationships with our children in a language rich environment, enabling them to develop confidence when using new language and celebrating the importance of communication skills needed in everyday life.
We promote, instil and reward the following Co-operative Learning Behaviours within our curriculum:
1. Active Listening
2. Helping and Encouraging Others
3. Completing Tasks
4. Everyone Participating
5. Explaining Ideas and telling ‘why’
Each half term, EYFS staff introduce a new theme to provide inspiration for learning, whilst providing the flexibility for children to follow their own interests and ideas. All areas of learning and development from the EYFS curriculum are followed and planned through a balance of child-initiated and adult-directed activities, whilst ensuring there is a broad, balanced and progressive learning environment and curriculum to motivate and engage the children in their learning. The adult-led activities allow the staff to check for understanding, through the use of questioning, to identify and respond to misconceptions and provide instant verbal feedback, which results in a strong impact on the acquisition of new learning. Our curriculum is child-centred and is adapted based on the cohort of children and their interests. The children develop new skills, acquire new knowledge and demonstrate their understanding through the seven areas of the EYFS curriculum. We promote the use of continuous provision to allow children to apply and develop the skills they have been taught during adult-led activities and direct teaching. Children have extended periods of time to engage in ‘exploration’ throughout the day and having a well-resourced environment supports children to develop key life skills such as independence, innovation, creativity, enquiry, analysis and problem solving. The EYFS staff observe the children throughout the day, areas of need and next steps are identified and taken into consideration when planning future learning opportunities to ensure all children make good progress. We provide interventions for individual children or small groups of children where needed to close gaps in learning. The EYFS staff seize every opportunity to use, model and develop the children’s language skills, whilst supporting them to interact with their peers and develop the skills of sharing and turn taking. During their day the children will have opportunities to work independently and work collaboratively as part of a group. The timetable is carefully structured so that children have bursts of directed teaching throughout the day. The timetable changes throughout the year to take into consideration the changing needs of the children and to support their transition into Year 1. Staff promote the importance of healthy eating, drinking and exercise as well as being kind to each other, modelling the school’s values. We develop close partnerships with parents, through termly information about their child’s progress and provide ideas of how they can further support their child’s learning at home. Our curriculum builds on what the children know and can do and is ambitious for every pupil, regardless of their level of need.
Reading is at the heart of our curriculum and our aim is to encourage a love of reading right from the start. We aim to expose the children to a range of books which are specifically chosen to develop their oracy, vocabulary and comprehension. The books chosen are embedded in our provision through activities, story sessions and on display for children to access independently. Through this, children begin to internalise new vocabulary, language patterns and begin to retell stories.
There is cohesion and consistency within our approach to align with the whole school English Curriculum.
Our approach includes:
• The inclusion of high-quality texts which are age and stage appropriate
• Modelled reading and re-telling opportunities
• Comprehension questions
• Dedicated phonics sessions, employing tricky and high-frequency words
• Cooperative learning behaviours which develop oracy and interdependence
We follow the DfES approved Little Wandle Letters and Sounds programme to ensure consistency across the school. In Reception, Phase1 is part of our everyday interactions with the children and they are introduced to Phase 2 and 3 where they develop Grapheme Phoneme Correspondence and segmenting and blending skills to decode words.
During the Summer term, children will move on to Phase 4. Children are encouraged to read at home and are regularly listened to read in school. The children are given books that match their phonic knowledge in order for them to apply their learning with the aim of becoming successful, confident and fluent readers. They are encouraged to apply their phonic knowledge in their writing as they begin to write words, captions and sentences.
In Reception, in line with the rest of the school, we follow the White Rose Maths Scheme of work. Having a high quality learning environment and meaningful interactions with adults, supports the children to develop mathematical thinking and discussion. Pupils learn through games and tasks using concrete manipulatives and pictorial structures and representations which are then rehearsed applied and recorded within their own child-led exploration. Children in Reception have the opportunity to develop fluency, revisit key concepts and address misconceptions through their adult directed sessions. We focus on developing the children’s fine manipulative skills to ensure they develop 1:1 correspondence when counting groups of objects.
Our wider curriculum is taught through the learning areas; ‘Understanding of the World’ and ‘Expressive Arts and Design.’ EYFS staff have a good understanding of how ELGs feed into the National Curriculum through our robust planning and CPD opportunities. Curriculum leads throughout the school are aware of the key ELG’s that link to each foundation subject and the progression of the subject. Exciting, purposeful and contextual activities are planned to build on children’s natural curiosity. For example, building a boat for their favourite toy enables them to think like a ‘Scientist’ and ‘Engineer’ as they explore a range of materials and test out their own ideas. Building further on our oracy focus, children will be encouraged to employ subject specific language and terminology in foundation subjects, and such vocabulary will be modelled, both verbally and orally, by the EYFS staff.
Our inclusive approach means that all children learn together, but we have a range of additional interventions and support for children who may not be reaching their potential, or are showing a greater depth of understanding and need further challenge. This includes, for example, sessions for developing speech and language, social skills, fine motor skills, phonics, and mathematics.
Regular monitoring of teaching and learning by SLT and the EYFS leader ensures staff develop good subject knowledge and have opportunities to develop their practice. The EYFS leader ensures staff receive CPD specific to EYFS to develop their practice.
We strive to ensure that our children’s progress during the EYFS curriculum is good, whilst considering their varied starting points. We endeavour for children to reach the Early Learning Goals at the end of Reception and to be at least in line with National Expectations. The impact of our curriculum is measured by our assessment procedures which allow us to measure our children’s outcomes against Age Related Expectations. Termly assessment data is input into Target Tracker to ensure rates of progress are at least good for all children, including vulnerable groups such as those with SEND, disadvantaged and summer born children. We moderate our assessment judgements both in school and externally with other schools within the Trust. In addition to this, we attend an EYFSP Profile Moderation meeting with the local authority. The impact of our curriculum is also measured by its effectiveness in supporting our children to develop into well-rounded individuals who demonstrate the school values and carry with them the knowledge, skills and attitudes to become lifelong learners and valuable citizens of our community. We aim for the children to leave the EYFS stage with the skills, knowledge and confidence to continue their journey as scientists, historians, artists and geographers, with a love of learning and to be curious about the world around them.
By the end of the Foundation Stage our pupils will develop:
- positive attitudes to learning through high levels of curiosity, concentration, engagement and enjoyment in activities
- effective speaking and listening skills, enabling them to access more areas of learning and communicate with both adults and their peers.
- a wider sense of the world around them and draw on these experiences to make links with new learning.
- the ability to apply their knowledge in a range of situations by explaining their ideas and understanding
- their confidence to take risks and reflect on their successes and failures with others, suggesting alternative ways to complete tasks
- successful and effective learning behaviours in preparation for Year 1
- a broader range of vocabulary and communicate effectively with adults and their peers
- their ability to apply their phonic and mathematical knowledge
- their self-regulation skills and work co-operatively with others, showing compassion and respect for the feelings and ideas of others.
Baseline: Prior to children starting, staff spend time speaking to the child’s parents, previous settings and read previous learning journeys to gain an understanding of the whole child and where they are at. During the first half term in Reception, all staff use ongoing assessments, observations and conversations with the child to develop a baseline assessment. This identifies each individual’s starting points in all areas so we can plan experiences to ensure progress.
Ongoing Observation: All ongoing observations are used to inform weekly planning and identify children’s next steps. This formative assessment does not involve prolonged periods of time away from the children and excessive paper work. Practitioners draw on their knowledge of the child and their own expert professional judgements through discussions with other practitioners, observing, photographs and physical examples such as a child’s drawing or creation. Some observations are uploaded using Tapestry and shared with parents and carers.
Formal Assessment: Phonic assessments are carried out using our phonics Tracker every half term to quickly identify pupils that are not making expected progress. Our aim is for children to ‘keep up’ rather than ‘catch up’ where possible. Assessments are completed three times per year and shared with parents, whereby the Class Teacher updates the progress children have made. In Summer Term 2, the EYFS Profile is completed where the teacher makes a judgement as to whether the child has met each of the 17 ELG’s. They will be assessed as either ‘emerging’ or ‘expected.’ Whilst there is no judgement to state if a child is exceeding beyond an ELG, teachers, have a duty to provide a narrative for both parents and the Year 1 teacher. Impact is also evident through transition into Year 1