Hazelbury Bryan Primary School

Early Years Foundation Stage

Early Years education is the foundation upon which young children build the rest of their schooling. It is a holistic education that encompasses all learning and development.

In the Foundation Base at Hazelbury Bryan Primary School we believe that all children are entitled to the best possible start in their school life, both intellectually and emotionally, in order to enable them to develop their full potential.

We aim to support each child's welfare, learning and developmental needs by:

  • Recognising that all children are unique and special.
  • Understanding that children develop in individual ways and at varying rates - physically, cognitively, linguistically, socially and emotionally.
  • Providing a safe, secure and caring environment where children feel happy and know that they are valued by the practitioners looking after them.
  • Fostering and nurturing children's self-confidence and self-esteem through their developing awareness of their own identity and role within the community.
  • Teaching them to express and communicate their needs and feelings in appropriate ways.
  • Encouraging children's independence and decision-making, supporting them to learn through their mistakes.
  • Developing children's understanding of social skills and the values and codes of behaviour required for people to work together harmoniously.
  • Supporting children to develop care, respect and appreciation for others, including those with beliefs, cultures and opinions differ to their own.
  • Understanding the importance of play in children's learning and development.
  • Providing learning experiences in play which reflect children's personal interests and areas of curiosity in order to encourage and develop their natural desire, interest, excitement and motivation to learn.
  • Providing experiences which build on children's existing knowledge and understanding in order to challenge, stimulate and extend their learning and development.
  • Providing effective learning opportunities in a range of environments, inside and outside.

The EYFS Framework

Teaching in the EYFS setting at Hazelbury Bryan Primary School is delivered in accordance with the Government's statutory document 'The Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage' (March 2012). This document is a principled approach to Early Years education, bringing together children's welfare, learning and development requirements through four themes: 'A Unique Child', 'Positive Relationships', 'Enabling Environments' and 'Children Learn in Different Ways and at Different Rates'.

The curriculum is centred on 3 prime areas of learning:

  1. Communication and Language.
  2. Physical Development
  3. Personal, Social and Emotional Development

We also support activities through four specific areas which strengthen the prime areas.

These are:

  1. Literacy
  2. Mathematics
  3. Understanding of the World
  4. Expressive Arts and Design

These Areas of Learning and Development address children's physical, cogitative, linguistic, social and emotional development. No one aspect of development stands in isolation from the others as all areas of learning and development are all closely interlinked. This ensures the delivery of a holistic, child-centred curriculum which allows children to make lots of links between what they are learning. All areas of learning and development are given equal weighting and value. At Hazelbury l, we believe that Early Years education is important in its own right and should not be viewed simply as preparation for the next stage of children's education. The EYFS framework allows a natural progression into the National Curriculum at the beginning of Year 1.

Active Learning through Play

At Hazelbury Bryan Primary School we recognise that young children learn best when they are active. We understand that active learning involves other people, objects, ideas and events that engage and involve children for sustained periods and our EYFS setting has an ethos of learning through play. We recognise the importance of children's play. It is an essential and rich part of their learning process, supporting them in all areas of development. Play is a powerful motivator encouraging children to be creative and to develop their ideas, understanding and language. Play is also flexible and able to suit the preferred learning style of the child. It can provide multiple ways for children to learn a variety of different skills and concepts. In the EYFS setting at School practitioners provide both structured and unstructured play opportunities inside and outside. These activities are designed to engage children in practical, first-hand experiences which will support children to discover, explore, investigate, develop their personal interests and areas of curiosity, and help to make sense of the world around them as they begin to understand specific concepts. Play opportunities are also set up to provide children with opportunities to apply newly acquired knowledge, demonstrating their skills and level of understanding. In providing these active learning opportunities through play we understand the central position of play within the EYFS framework. This is essentially a play based curriculum and pedagogy as the provision of play opportunities underpins its delivery within our setting.