Early Years Foundation Stage
At St Francis Primary School, our Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum is designed to promote and encourage all children to be motivated, curious, independent and happy learners.
We aim to ensure that we provide all children with the best start to their education through a carefully designed curriculum that enables them to fulfil their full potential and achieve future success regardless of their various starting points and backgrounds. We have an inclusive and broad curriculum that incorporates diversity and is culturally sensitive. We ensure that all children’s individual needs are met through careful planning and assessment, identifying and addressing any issues and implementing early intervention or additional support if required.
We recognise every child is unique, and we acknowledge and promote children’s interests to provide them with the opportunities to follow their imagination and creativity. We celebrate the differences in our school community, and always strive to promote and instil a love for learning.
At St Francis Primary School, we ensure that all children experience the seven areas of learning set out in the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework through a balance of adult lead teaching and child initiated play. At the end of Reception, children are assessed in each area under the ‘Early Learning Goals’.
There are seven areas of learning and development.
The prime areas are: –
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Physical Development
- Communication and Language
The Specific areas are: –
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts & Design
Each week we have a ‘Book of the week’ linked to the current topic. Our children are fully immersed in this book, and we plan daily adult-led activities that are linked. Alongside this, our carefully enhanced indoor and outdoor provision, allows the ‘book of the week’ to come to life. Children are encouraged to develop their learning independently through discovery, exploration, curiosity and challenge. All staff engage in quality interactions with children throughout the day, which enables the staff team to be flexible with planning and include ‘current interests’; we believe our children at St Francis should be a part of the planning process and have ownership over what we do.
Whilst the children’s interests are at the heart of our curriculum, we ensure that we provide all pupils with a broad range of experiences and opportunities covering a variety of festivals and celebrations giving them the cultural capital they need for future success.
As we are a mixed setting of Nursery and Reception aged children. We have a carefully planned out skill progression document, which has been developed using the new EYFS Framework and Development Matters; this allows for all staff and children to be aware of differentiation within our provision and adult interactions, depending on the stage of each individual child.
British Values play a fundamental part of our curriculum and everything we do. Many of the British Values encourage sharing and collaborating, and it's one of the most important skills children learn in the early years. We develop provisions that allow children to share, while encouraging collaborating and working together towards a common goal.
We make all learning meaningful so our children can use what they have learned and apply it in their independent learning. The Characteristics of Effective Learning are threaded through all learning in the EYFS curriculum. Emphasis is placed upon playing and learning, active learning and thinking critically; Adults engage in purposeful play and quality interactions with children, modelling and encouraging these characteristics.
Our curriculum and the staff team, ensure that all children, from their own starting points, make very good progress. Children in our early years, on average, arrive with much lower starting points than national. During their time with us children make rapid progress towards the national expectation for a good level of development at the end of the Reception year. Pupils also make good progress toward their age-related expectations both academically and socially. Our skills progression document is closely linked to the Year One curriculum, allowing all children to have the necessary skills and knowledge to be fully equipped to succeed in Year One.
Children at St Francis develop their characteristics of learning and are able to apply their knowledge to a range of situations making links and explaining their ideas and understanding. Children are confident to take risks and discuss their successes and failures with peers and adults drawing on their experiences to improve or adjust what they are doing.
At St Francis, our creative and balanced provision of learning experiences enables our children to develop as happy, motivated, and independent learners.