The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum

Early Years Curriculum

In September 2012 a new Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) was introduced. In this new framework changes have been made to the areas of learning. The new areas of learning are listed below. These areas are covered in Nursery and Reception phases. There are two main aspects called Prime Areas of Learning (the most important building blocks of learning) and Specific Areas of Learning (focused on specific subject areas).

Children are assessed for age-related expectations and we track children to identify how they are progressing towards the Development Matters targets, which most children should achieve by the end of Reception. However, every child is unique and develops at different paces. The document below offers more information on the EYFS curriculum, and has been published by the Department for Education.

Development Matters PDF »

Areas of Learning

The children in the Foundation Stage will have the opportunity to learn in a creative play based environment set up to include whole class teaching, small group time and one to one activities with an adult. Children will have the opportunity to explore and extend their skills in all curriculum areas.

The areas of learning include:

  1. Mathematics
  2. Understanding of the world
  3. Physical development
  4. Communication, language and literacy
  5. Expressive arts and design
  6. Personal, social and emotional development
  7. Reading, writing and phonics

Prime Areas of Learning (Important building blocks of learning)

  • Communication and language development: involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
  • Physical Development: involves providing opportunities for children to be active and interactive; to develop their coordination, control and movement; children taught to value and understand importance of physical activity as part of a healthy lifestyle, including food choices.
  • Personal, social and emotional development: involves helping children develop a positive sense of themselves and others; to form positive relationships with adults and children; respect for each other; develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviours in groups.

Specific Areas of Learning

  • Literacy development: linking sounds and letters to beginning to read and write. Phonics is a way of teaching children to read.
  • Mathematics: developing skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating using simple addition and subtraction problems; describe shapes, spaces and measurements.
  • Understanding the world (Humanities and Sciences): guiding children to make sense of their world; explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
  • Expressive arts and design: opportunities for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through art, music, dance, roleplay, movement and design and technology.


Supporting Early Years Learning

A recent Ofsted Survey stated that parents or co-educators play a vital role in promoting achievement. We welcome parental contributions such as sharing of a language, making presentations, suggesting ideas for topics or resources and reinforcing learning at home. At home, you are likley to be reading to your children, helping them learn colours, days of the week, nursery rhymes, tell stories and play games invloving counting and matching.  You will be helping them to learn about personal safety and teaching them self-care skills.