“Children are born ready, able and eager to learn. They actively reach out to interact with other people, and in the world around them. Development is not an automatic process, however. It depends on each unique child having opportunities to interact in positive relationships and enabling environments.” (Development Matters 2012) The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum is split into four different themes which follow through the guidance (Development Matters), these are;
A Unique Child
“Every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.” (Development Matters 2012)
At Lions Cub Nursery we understand that each child is unique and will have their own needs and interests so we constantly observe each child’s development, talk to their parents and discuss with the child if age appropriate to helps us to assess where they are in their development and what interests they have, then we plan for those next steps.
“Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.” (Development Matters 2012)
We have a key worker system in place which supports our children in building positive relationships with both adults and their peers. We provide warm and caring relationships with our children to help them feel safe and settled. Key persons also support their children in developing a positive self image, becoming independent and following boundaries.
“Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and carers.” (Development Matters 2012)
Lions Cub Nursery values all our staff and the skills, experiences and opportunities they offer to our children and families. We believe that it is important to build strong relationships with parents as they are the child’s first educator and spend the most time with the child. Through these relationships we are able to find out important information which will help us ensure that every child’s learning and care is tailored to meet their individual needs.
Practitioners will help to develop a stimulating environment where children’s achievements are celebrated and rich learning and play opportunities and experiences are offered.
Learning and Development
“Children develop and learn in different ways. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early year’s provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.” (Development Matters 2012)
We teach children in a playful, challenging way providing opportunities in the three prime areas of learning; Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Communication and Language and Physical Development and the four specific areas of learning; Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design. Children are encouraged to play and explore, be active learners and be creative and critical thinkers which are all characteristics of effective learning.
When a child starts at Lions Cub Nursery they will have a number of settling in sessions where their assigned key person will welcome them, play and interact with them and talk to their parent/carer. The key person will ask both the parent and child if age appropriate a number of different questions to gather some background information on their needs, interests and stage of development. The key person will also observe the child at these sessions to develop a picture of what they enjoy and are interested in at the nursery. Key persons will observe their children throughout their time at the nursery to help them understand the child’s level of achievement, interest and learning styles, and to then shape learning experiences reflecting those observations. Key persons will also communicate with parents on a regular basis gathering information about the child’s learning and interests at home.
Key persons will analyse their observations deciding what they tell them about each child and help them to identify where the child is in their own development pathway. These assessments will help key persons plan for the child’s interests and next steps in their learning and development. Key persons will keep parents informed of their child’s achievement by communicating with them on a regular basis and arranging formal and informal meetings throughout the year, where parents and key persons can discuss the child’s development.
When a child turns 2 years of age their key person will review their progress and provide a written summary to their parent/carer on the prime areas of development (Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Communication and Language, Physical Development). The progress check will identify the child’s strengths and any areas where the child’s progress is less then expected. If there are any areas of concerns the child’s key person will develop a target plan to support the child in their future learning and development, they may also involve other professionals if needed.
All information written in the progress check will be discussed with the child’s parent/carer and they will have the opportunity to add any information along with any other child care provider.
The play rooms are divided into different areas of continuous provision which practitioners then plan experiences, opportunities or resources for. These are all based on the observations and assessments taken of all individual children’s interests and practitioners are there to support the children with these interests. These experiences, opportunities and resources will be changed when the child’s interest’s change so could be during the morning session, at the end of the day, after three days, at the end of the week etc it is all dependent on the individual child.
Group times will be planned for the different ages or stages of development with both a mixture of adult led and child initiated activities.
And weekly outings will be planned around the local environment for all ages.
Key persons will observe their children during these opportunities and experiences and will then assess what they have seen and plan new opportunities, experiences or for resources to be added and the process begins again.
Key persons will build up a story of each child’s time at the nursery using their observations, pieces of work, photos, video and sound recordings. Parents will be encouraged to add to this story by sharing things that the child has done at home, places they have visited or observations they have noted down. Children will also be encouraged to add to their story with art work they have created of photo’s they have taken.
Key persons will sit with children on a regular basis looking through their stories and celebrate their achievements.
Parents and carers are welcome to look at their child’s story whenever they would like and are invited into the nursery throughout the years to discuss their child’s learning and development.
If you would like more information regarding the Early Years Foundation Stage please speak to your child’s key person or Kelly Youldon-Piercy (Nursery Manager).
Alternatively you can visit the Department for Education website: www.education.gov.uk/a0068102/early-years-foundation-stage-eyfs