Early Years Foundation Stage

Exploring and Learning in the Early Years

Early Years Foundation Stage at Eltham Church of England Primary School

The EYFS staff have worked together to design a curriculum based on educational programmes that ensures a good coverage of the EYFS outcomes through careful planning and are able to implement a broad and balanced curriculum because of this. The children in the phase have daily access to all areas of the curriculum both inside and outside the classroom.

At Eltham C of E we currently use Tapestry to record the assessments made on the children’s acquisition of skills through careful observation by all of the adults in the setting.   We continually engage in conversation and question the children’s ideas. We scaffold the children’s learning through enhancing the provision available and providing resources for the children to learn best, following their interests. Please see link at the bottom of this page to the Tapestry PowerPoint presentation for parents.

The acquisition of phonics is a key focus in EYFS – children are taught to read systematically by using synthetic phonics and are able to choose books that match their phonics knowledge to take home and practice the reading skills. We provide information to parents about how to help their children read – please see link at the bottom of this page for a copy of the PowerPoint Presentation. Children use their phonics skills confidently in developing their reading and writing skills. Teachers provide parents with ‘phonics packs’ so that they can support their children at home. Please see the schools Phonics section for a short video on how to articulate the phonemes and for our phonics policy.

Children in the Nursery are supported to engage in Phase One of Letters and Sounds and the staff realise the importance of this phase and the impact on future listening and reading skills.

Communication with parents is another real strength at Eltham C of E. The ‘soft’ start to the day helps parents to develop relationships with the school. An adult from the EYFS team is available before and after school to talk to and answer any questions parents have. Our families are confident to approach staff to discuss the progress of their child as well as any concerns they may have.  This was evident in the parent consultation responses in Spring 2019.  Children’s personal, social and emotional development is outstanding because children feel safe and are secure, stimulated and happy and this was heavily supported by the parent consultation feedback.

Parents contribute to pupils’ learning through home– school books, challenges are provided for children to do at home which link to current topics in school. Parents also contribute through Tapestry, the online platform, demonstrating that we are all instrumental in ensuring that our children’s development is outstanding. Please see link at bottom of the page for recent ‘Weekly Challenges’.

Parents and families are invited into the classroom each week to share a book with their child. This is enjoyed by both the children and their families alike.

The environment in the EYFS provides available resources to meet the children’s learning needs and promote the Characteristics of Effective Learning and opportunities to give time and focus to a chosen task.  The children have access to an excellent balance of child initiated, adult initiated and adult led activities. The children are encouraged to be independent and settle quickly into the routines of school.

The EYFS staff work together with the Year One team to ensure a smooth transition throughout each phase of the children’s education, ensuring school readiness.

With support from the school Special Education Needs Co-ordinator, Local Authority Speech and Language Therapist and Autism Spectrum Disorder outreach service, teachers in the EYFS ensure that any child with additional needs are supported and ensure that all of our children achieve fully.

What our parents say about us – Parent Questionnaire (Spring 2019).

“The school is very caring, and I have found everyone very responsive to any concerns I may have. I am impressed by the curriculum so far and the range of activities the children do.”

“Tapestry is amazing, it’s wonderful to be able to have an insight into my child’s day.”

“Teachers are brilliant at both nurturing and developing the children.”

“There are lots of fun activities that are enriching such as football, music, etc.”

“My child loves the weekly challenges and it gives us variety with learning at home.”

“Teachers are very supportive and caring, class seems well organised, disciplined and fun for the children.”

“The staff have a genuine desire to make sure each child is appropriately challenged and supported in their learning.”

“I feel that I can always have a quick chat if there’s a concern with my child.”

“The reading workshop is such a lovely idea!”