The Early Years Foundation Stage
The Early Years Foundation Stage is the core document given by the Department for Education (DfE) to those who care for and educate children from birth to 5 years old. The following statement from the EYFS explains the motivations of the framework. The four themes which underpin all of the guidance given in the EYFS are in red.
"Children are born ready, able and eager to learn. They actively reach out to interact with other people, and in the world around them. However, healthy learning and development is not an automatic process. It depends on each unique child having opportunities to interact in positive relationships and enabling environments" (EYFS)
According to the DfE, there are 7 Areas of Learning & Development which can be split into prime areas and specific areas. They are:
Prime – Personal, Social & Emotional; Physical; Communication & Language
Specific – Literacy; Mathematics; Understanding the World; Expressive Arts & Design
At Halesowen Day Nursery, each area of learning and development is implemented through a variety of purposeful planned and free play activities which include a mixture of adult-led, child-initiated & child-led activities, both inside and outside. Individual children’s current interests are very important in the planning of their activities and subsequent next steps.
Each unique child reaches out to relate to people and situations through what are called the Characteristics of Effective Learning – these link to the 7 Areas of Learning and development discussed above.
While in our care, your child will be encouraged to play and explore, find out, have a go, persevere, be involved, make choices, make links, have their own ideas, voice their opinions and, above all, enjoy learning and taking part during their time at nursery. Activities include, sand, water, nature discovery, planting, role play, singing, instruments, cooking, socialising, listening to & telling stories, heuristic play, treasure baskets, arts & crafts, dressing up, painting, drawing, play-dough clay, sleep & rest, climbing, physical play, cafeteria, puzzles, counting, constructing, computing, mark making and early writing, numbers, letters and much more play and exploration.
When they begin, all children are set up with a profile on our online Learning Journals system which we use to record their individual developments and achievements. These are noted and shared with you and your child and create their own ‘Learning Journey’. These recordings can come at any given time and from a variety of sources such as: observations, spontaneous 'wow' moment notes, your parental voice and the voice of the child themselves. This is then used as a monitoring and assessment tool which enables our early years educators to provide 'next steps' for your child and informs our planning, and the environments and experiences your child will have next.
Special Educational Needs
Here at Halesowen Day Nursery, we have a designated SENCO who, alongside colleagues/key carers, has responsibility for identifying, managing and supporting a child's additional needs. Relevant information is shared and discussed at your welcome meeting to ensure that we are able to cater for your child's all-round development. IEP's and care plans are put in place and we will work with outside agencies when necessary to enable the best activities and environment for your child's progression.