Our childrens’ early experiences contribute vastly to their overall growth and development, paving the way to help them to understand the various situations and experiences they will encounter as they grow. Children between 0-5 years learn at an extraordinary pace; hence adopting a learner-centred approach and educating your child holistically is highly beneficial to the development of their skills.
EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) provides an integrated approach, designed specifically for children up to age 5. The initial years of your child should undoubtedly be characterised by happiness, fun, excitement, safety, security, and action. EYFS provides this opportunity and allows your child a safe place in which to learn and develop physically, cognitively, emotionally and socially.
All You Need to Know About EYFS
The Seven Areas of Learning in the EYFS
The following areas are observed by EYFS education practitioners to support your children and enable them to learn according to their individual needs and abilities.
- Language Development & Communication: When children are allowed to listen and speak freely, they inevitably develop their language and interactive skills at an advanced rate, and learn to apply these skills to the different situations that occur around them.
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development: Your child will explore the different social skills they’ll need for day to day activities. They will learn about themselves and be taught to respect others, with an understanding of their different emotional states and
- Physical Development: Playful and active behaviours come naturally to children, so this is accepted, encouraged, and funnelled into learning. They discover their senses and learn about their physical structure, allowing them to improve their skills both physically and cognitively.
- Mathematics: Children learn about quantity and comparison numbers, simple calculations, and start building rudimentary knowledge of basic shapes, outlines, and measurements.
- Expressive Arts and Design: Allowing children to express themselves through colourful drawings, paintings and fun activities improves their cognitive and creative abilities.
- Literacy: Children are taught how to read and write, gaining the ability to recognise and distinguish different phonemic sounds and shapes.
- Understanding the World: Children begin to gain an understanding of the world and themselves as an individual. They begin to identify different creatures, plants, and objects, with vivid illustrations to aid the learning process.
Why is EYFS Important?
Key life skills are gained in the first few years and stay with the child forever. Providing a safe and enriching educational environment in those vital early years helps children to build on the learning and experiences that will be useful for them throughout their lives. Specialised learning for children with disabilities and special educational needs is also addressed at this young age to pave the way for future learning.
The EYFS curriculum was designed by the English government to provide the framework for registered practitioners that ensures children between 0 and 5 learn the vital skills they are capable of understanding. The internal monitoring and assessment within EYFS schools ensure children are receiving beneficial education and an excellent childcare service. Externally, the children’s assessment reports provided to parents help to build the child’s confidence level, communication skills, and overall worldview.
The EYFS framework aids the child’s learning processes and helps them become acquainted with the schooling environment. Our Montessori programs offer an integrated approach to learning, considering each child and ensuring they are actively encouraged to achieve their potential. We also hire qualified EYFS teachers who can fully understand and take care of the children in our care.
The Role of the Key Person in EYFS
The Key Person is the child’s acting caregiver, with the sole responsibility of ensuring the children are safe and well taken care of during their early years of education. The Key Person performs a similar role to the parents in their absence, forming a vital part of the child’s education. The Key Person is inherent in the Montessori approach.
The Key Person’s Responsibilities
- A Key Person must understand children and can sensitively respond to their physical needs, which include: feeding, toileting, dressing, nappy changing and responding appropriately to emotional behaviors.
- A Key Person is always available and accessible. They must have a “buddy” or assistant that they can hand over to in case they are absent for any length of time. This second person must also be aware of the children’s needs and to be fully competent to care for them.
- They must build a close relationship with the children and their carers or parents.
- They must regularly inform parents and carers of the activities their children have engaged in, with aids such as pictures, videos and so forth.
- They must also provide information on the development and progress of the children to their respective parents or carers.
- They must always request the presence of professionals and specialists to help them whenever they require special assistance.
- A Key Person must ensure that they form a strong relationship with each child in their group. They must also encourage them to mix and interact well with their peers.
Children develop best when they have someone in addition to their parents whom they can trust to listen to and take care of them. A Key Person works alongside parents and carers to help facilitate the learning process and to encourage the child’s interests and abilities both inside and outside school.
A Key Person can also encourage and reassure the children when they start to experience a new phase in their lives and is able to understand and interpret gestures and vague cues from the children in their care, allowing them to provide support when it is needed. This is what is known as Following the Child.
Would Your Children Benefit from EYFS?
Many of the skills we use in adulthood were either developed in the first few years of our lives or had the foundations set for us during that stage. When learning these skills are made safe, easy and fun, they can lay the foundation for brilliant future potential.
EYFS focuses on the major areas of learning your children need for their growth and development, but the guidelines are flexible enough that they can easily be moulded by practitioners of early years’ education, to suit the needs of individual children.
The EYFS curriculum is a very popular choice, with more and more parents opting to give their children a head start in the educational system. At Little Land Nursery, we follow these guidelines in tandem with the Montessori educational approach, enabling us to focus wholly on each child and encourage the development of their individual gifts and talents. Our teachers are assisted by educated and often, teacher-qualified ladies.
If you want to know more about Little Land and what we can offer for your child, book a tour today.