The Early Years Foundation Stage Framework exists to support all professionals working in the EYFS to help your child, and was developed with a number of early years experts and parents.
In 2012 the framework was revised to make it clearer and easier to use, with more focus on the things that matter most. This new framework also has a greater emphasis on your role in helping your child develop.
It sets out:
· The legal welfare requirements that everyone registered to look after children must follow to keep your child safe and promote their welfare
· The 7 areas of learning and development which guide professionals’ engagement with your child’s play and activities as they learn new skills and knowledge
· Assessments that will tell you about your child’s progress through the EYFS
Expected levels that your child should reach at age 5, usually the end of the reception year; these expectations are called the “Early Learning Goals (ELGs)”
Much thought has been given to making sure that your child is as safe as possible. Within the EYFS there is a set of welfare standards that everyone must follow. These include the numbers of staff required in a nursery, how many children a childminder can look after, and things like administering medicines and carrying out risk assessments.
You can find out about the quality of the Pre School and other early years providers in relation to the EYFS Framework by checking what the Government’s official inspection body for early years, Ofsted,has to say about it. You can find this information on the Ofsted website here.
The EYFS Framework explains how and what your child will be learning to support their healthy development.
Your child will be learning skills, acquiring new knowledge and demonstrating their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development.
Children should mostly develop the 3 prime areas first. These are:
· Communication and language;
· Physical development; and
· Personal, social and emotional development.
These prime areas are those most essential for your child’s healthy development and future learning.
As children grow, the prime areas will help them to develop skills in 4 specific areas.
· Understanding the world; and
· Expressive arts and design.
These 7 areas are used to plan your child’s learning and activities. We make sure that the activities are suited to your child’s unique needs. This is a little bit like a
curriculum in primary and secondary schools, but it's suitable for very young children, and it's designed to be really flexible so that we can follow your child's unique needs and interests.
Children in the EYFS learn by playing and exploring, being active, and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside.
At some point after your child turns 2, the Key Person working with your child will give you a written summary of how your child is progressing against the 3 prime areas of learning:
This is called the progress check at age 2.
This check will highlight areas where your child is progressing well and any where they might need some extra help or support – and how mums and dads and other family members or carers can work with the key person to help. You might find it useful to share the information from the check with other professionals such as health visitors (who can use it as part of the health and development review).