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Early Years Foundation stage (EYFS)


There are four guiding principles that shape practice in early years settings. 

  • 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 with teaching and support from adults, who respond to their individual interests and needs and help them to build their learning over time.  Children benefit from a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and/or carers.

  • Importance of learning and development. Children develop and learn at different rates. See The Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning (COETL). For more details see the EYFS parents guide here.

The EYFS learning and development requirements comprise the seven areas of learning and development and the educational programmes. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected but three areas are particularly important for building a foundation for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, forming relationships and thriving. These are the prime areas:

  • Communication and language

  • Physical development

  • Personal, social and emotional development

Providers must also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied. The specific areas are: 

  • Literacy

  • Mathematics

  • Understanding the world

  • Expressive arts and design

For more information, check out the following links

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