At Hucknall Day Nursery, we believe that the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) provides a solid foundation for children to become lifelong learners. We are passionate that all children reach their full, unique potential alongside their peers. Our aim is to equip children with their own ‘essential toolkit’, so that whenever they leave us, they are ready for their next stage of education. We make our children feel safe and secure enabling a positive and confident attitude to learning. We see our nursery as an extension of your family and want to give children a welcoming, caring, nurturing environment in which to grow and learn. We see every child as in individual and underpin the fundamental British Values into all aspects of our play.
We understand that every child is an induvial and we support children to make progress from their individual starting points. Our staff pride themselves on knowing their key children- their interests, their family and their community. They understand the ways in which they learn best and what your child needs to do to help them achieve their next stages of development. We build on their existing knowledge and interests and develop their experiences of the world around them. There is a strong emphasis on speech and language and want our children to learn in a vocabulary- rich environment. We understand the importance of developing early language in babyhood and acknowledge the benefits of this as children progress into adulthood. As a setting, we are committed to raising outcomes for every child and support the government’s pledge to half the attainment gap in communication and reading that currently exists nationally at the end of the Reception Year.
We shape our educational programmes area the three prime areas of the EYFS:
- Communication and language
We give children opportunities to experience a rich language environment. We help develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves and to speak and listen in a range of situations
- Physical development
Our practitioners provide our children with opportunities to be active and interactive, helping them to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement. We teach our children the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food. Children are encouraged to take part in the ‘daily mile’ programme and our 4 weekly menu is designed to be balanced and nutritious, with a minimum of five servings of fruit and vegetables per day
- Personal, social and emotional development
We help children to develop a positive sense of themselves and others, through praise and rewards. We encourage them to form positive relationships and develop respect for others, whilst developing social skills and learning how to manage their feelings. We recognise the importance of their behaviours and attitudes, in regards to their peers and towards their learning. Working with our positive behaviour management strategies, we help children to understand appropriate behaviour in groups and to have confidence in their own abilities
We also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied. These specific areas are:
We encourage our children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children are given access to a wide range of reading materials including books, poems, and other written materials to ignite their interest
Children are given opportunities to develop and improve their number skills. This includes counting, understanding and use of numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems. We also include shapes, spaces and measure.
- Understanding the world
Children learn to make sense of the world and communities in which we live, and those beyond. This is achieved by giving them opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment
- Expressive arts and design
Children are encouraged to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.
All children have access to all 7 areas of the EYFS but for children aged 0-2 years, learning is centred around The Prime Areas
- We recognise that effective teaching learning is at the heart of the overall effectiveness and quality of education and that children learn through:Playing and exploring – children investigate and experience things and are willing to have a go.
- Active learning – children concentrate and keep on trying when they encounter difficulties and enjoy their achievements.
- Creating and thinking critically – children have and develop their own ideas, are able to make links between ideas and develop a range of strategies for doing things.
Our teaching approach across all areas of the curriculum is flexible; dependent upon the child’s age and current stage of development. We largely follow a child centred approach, and follow the interest of the child. Staff plan according to the children interests and needs to help them to build their learning over time. We have more recently incorporated an ‘in the moment approach’. This aids us in ‘tuning into’ your child and maintaining learning momentum.
Throughout our setting, children can choose how and where they learn. We provide them with practical yet playful support. Staff create environments conductive to conversations and present them with challenges to extend their thinking. Children have the opportunity to learn through whole room activities, small circle time sessions and from one to one support. Our staff work closely with outside education and healthcare professionals if children need additional support to progress.
Our learning environments, both inside and outside are also adapted regularly to meet the different and developing needs of the children in our care. We aim to ensure that these areas are always stimulating and exciting and that, importantly, they are accessible to all children, regardless of where they are on their learning journey. We use resources to help foster a sense of independence and self-confidence. Our staff know when to observe, co-play and extend children’s learning. There is a strong emphasis on parent partnerships and we offer ongoing support and advice. We work with parents, suggesting home learning opportunities and welcome parental and child input to build on their child’s learning experiences.
We observe children through play and use these as accurate assessments of their progress through the EYFS. These provide us with information for future planning; we learn more about their interests and are able to set individual children’s next steps for progressive learning. They enable us, to track individual progress and well as progress within COHORTS of children. We also use these to help assess the quality of our provision and help identify areas for improvement.