Medium Term Planning

The Early Years Foundation Stage
The Nursery and Reception years form the Foundation Stage of education.  The curriculum is intended to build on what the children already know. The Foundation Stage staff work carefully to match the needs of the children; we recognise that well planned play is the way in which young children learn with enjoyment and challenge. This is delivered through a topic which changes each half term or as the children’s interests change.

Our Early Years Foundation Stage seeks to provide:
• Quality and consistency - so that every child makes good progress and no child gets left behind;

• A secure foundation - through learning and development opportunities which are planned around the needs and interests of each individual child and are assessed and reviewed regularly;

• Partnership working - between practitioners and with parents and/or carers;

• Quality of opportunity and anti-discriminatory practice -  ensuring that every child is included and supported.

Overarching principles
Four guiding principles shape the practice in our setting. 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.


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.

Characteristics of learning:
In planning and guiding children’s activities, we consider the different ways that children learn and reflect these in their practice. The characteristics of effective teaching and learning are:

Playing and exploring

Active learning

Creating and thinking critically

Children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’.

Children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements.

Children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.

The areas of learning and development
There are seven areas of learning and development that form the Early Years Foundation Stage.

All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected; however we understand the importance of ensuring that all children have a solid base in the prime areas from an early age.

Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive.

Prime areas:

  • communication and language;
  • physical development; and
  • personal, social and emotional development.

We also support children in the four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied.

Specific areas:

  • literacy;
  • mathematics;
  • understanding the world; and
  • expressive arts and design.

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