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.

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.  In EYFS we use the Essential Letters and Sounds programme.  Children use their phonics skills confidently in developing their reading and writing skills. Teachers provide parents with phonics mats so that they can support their children at home. Please click here to go to the Literacy page for information about phonics and for a short video on how to articulate the phonemes.

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.

Parents contribute to pupils’ learning through online reading platform, parent workshops and trips. Parents also contribute through Tapestry, the online platform, demonstrating that we are all instrumental in ensuring that our children’s development is outstanding.

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.​

Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage

What our parents say about us – Parent Questionnaire (Autumn 2021).

“I think Tapestry is a very helpful and valuable resource for parents to see what our little ones are doing everyday and how happy they are getting involved in their class activities. I love to see the learning journey of my daughter in a very real time.”

“We are thrilled with how excited our son is to go to school and confidently walks into class every day. It feels like he has been there a lot longer than one month. He is clearly soaking up lots of the learning as this comes out in conversation on the walk home or later in the evening. He loves the challenges of the Dojo’s and Star of the Week and talks about these with real excitement and is focused on doing well to achieve these! We love the daily Tapestry reports. I find it really useful as a way in for conversation with our son about his day otherwise he probably feels too overwhelmed with where to start recalling his day in school. He loves looking at the photos on Tapestry with me. It puts a real smile on his face when he can physically show me his learning from the day and point out his friends. It brings his day much more to life for both of us and we can enjoy sharing these moments together.”

“We would like to express our gratitude and satisfaction that our son has settled very well and enjoys his daily interactions and activities at the school. It seems that Mrs Griffiths and the team have found the right balance of play, teaching and discipline, which can often be a challenging task.”

“My Son has settled very well in to reception with Mrs Griffiths and Mrs Day. He really enjoys it. Very happy and at peace with the teachers and the School on a whole.”

Parent Meeting – Early Maths in EYFS

Reception Parent Meeting 2023