Early Years Foundation Stage
Children in our Nursery and Reception classes follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework. At St Joseph’s our planning and teaching within the EYFS incorporates the children interests and individual needs. Learning takes place in both the indoor and outdoor environments. The children are encouraged to take part in first-hand experiences, play, explore, experiment, think critically, and solve problems.
The EYFS framework has three prime areas:
- Communication and Language: This involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
- Physical development: This involves providing opportunities for children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and how to make healthy choices in relation to food.
- Personal, social and emotional development: Involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups and to have confidence in their own abilities.
There are also four specific areas, through which the prime areas are strengthened and applied. The specific areas are:
- Literacy: This involves encouraging children to look at books, poems and other written materials to ignite their interest, it also involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and begin to read and write.
- Mathematics: This is about providing children with opportunities to develop and improve skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems, describing shapes, spaces and measures.
- Understanding the world: This involves guiding children to make sense of the world around them and their community by giving them opportunities to explore, observe, and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
- Expressive arts and design: Involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.
Characteristics of Effective Learning
The characteristics of effective learning run through and underpin all seven areas of learning and development, representing processes rather than outcomes. The Characteristics of effective learning are:
- Playing and exploring – engagement
- Active learning- motivation
- Creating and thinking critically- thinking