The Early Years Foundation Stage
Alongside following our Montessori curriculum ethos at the Old School House we also fully follow the statutory Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).
“Every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their potential. Children develop quickly in the early years and a child’s experiences between birth and age five have a major impact on their future life chances. A secure, safe and happy childhood is important in its own right. Good parenting and high quality early learning together provide the foundation children need to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) sets the standards that all early years providers must meet to ensure that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe. It promotes teaching and learning to ensure children’s ‘school readiness’ and gives children the broad range of knowledge and skills that provide the right foundation for good future progress through school and life.’ (DfE 2014, Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage)
The EYFS states four guiding principles that should shape practice in early years settings. These are:
- “every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured;
- children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships;
- 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/or carers; and
- children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities. “ (DfE 2014)
The EYFS requires that ‘when a child is aged between two and three, practitioners must review their progress, and provide parents and/or carers with a short written summary of their child’s development in the prime areas. This progress check must identify the child’s strengths, and any areas where the child’s progress is less than expected. If there are significant emerging concerns, or an identified special educational need or disability, practitioners should develop a targeted plan to support the child’s future learning and development involving parents and/or carers and other professionals (for example, the provider’s Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator or health professionals) as appropriate’ (DfE 2014)
It is mandatory for us to prepare a summative assessment of your child’s learning and development when they are approaching 30 months - we will meet with you to discuss the assessment and celebrate your child’s achievements, and also discuss honestly and professionally any areas of your child’s development and learning about which we have concerns. Both our assessment and details of discussions shared between us should be shared with your health visitor when your child attends for their two and a half year old check to ensure that we are all working together to make sure your child had the best possible start to their education.