Early Years & Foundation stage
At Kerr Mackie Primary school Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) we aim for our children to feel happy and safe. We provide a nurturing environment where all children are valued, building positive relationships where children develop the confidence to learn with each other. They are excited and motivated to learn and are provided with a range of rich and challenging learning experiences, opportunities to explore their surroundings, ask questions, take risks and learn through first hand experiences. We believe that children learn best when they are engaged, motivated and excited, and believe this happens best when children lead their own learning and are learning through their play.
“Children learn as they play. Most importantly, in play children learn how to learn.” – O. Fred Donaldson.
We have high expectations of all of our children and recognise that they have different starting points to their learning. They bring a range of different knowledge and experiences that we aim to build upon and provide them with the necessary skills to express and communicate their thoughts and ideas. We plan for each child’s age and stage of development, to enable them to progress and develop to achieve their full, unique potential. We aim for children to gain skills across all areas and to develop the independence and resilience to become lifelong learners.
In our Nursery and Reception classes, we follow the EYFS curriculum which has seven main areas of learning.
The Prime Areas:
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Communication and Language
- Physical Development
The Specific Areas:
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
We implement these areas of learning by providing a safe, stimulating environment that allowed children to discover, be challenged, consolidate and achieve their very whilst developing their resilience and independence. There is a combination of adult-led, teacher taught whole class, group and individual support. Throughout all of these areas of learning and at the heart of the EYFS curriculum are the ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’. We strive to develop these key characteristics of ‘Playing and Learning’, ‘Active Learning’ and ‘Thinking Critically’ in order to give the children the skills that they will continue to draw upon throughout their development.
We know how important it is to work in partnership with our families to ensure children feel settled, safe and happy in our care. We get to know our families and children well and use their interests and knowledge to support and inspire our children’s knowledge and understanding about themselves, our local community and beyond.
Our learning environments, both inside and outside are adapted to meet the different and developing needs of our children. We are passionate advocates for ensuring all of our children are able to share how they feel and work with them to support any worries or concerns they may have as we fully believe happy children learn.
We actively promote a love of reading within the children and seek to immerse the children in stories and books in all aspects of their learning. We use half-termly themes as a hook to inspire and engage the children, and then follow, develop and extend their interests and enquiries as they arise. As part of each topic, we cover a number of set texts, covering a variety of genres, as a basis for learning. However, will also share other texts, where appropriate, as points of interest.
Within our EYFS curriculum, children are assessed through accurate observations informing future planning and children’s individual next steps in their learning. This enables us to ensure learning is embedded and consistent, that all children’s individual learning needs are met, and that they continue to make the best possible progress within our EYFS setting.
The impact of our provision can be seen through outcomes of our children and the delight they take with coming to school every day excited to learn. It is a privilege to be part of such an important stage in our children’s development and our dedicated staff work tirelessly to deliver the best possible outcomes for our children.