At the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage (Reception), children are assessed against the Early Learning Goals those who are at the expected level of development will achieve the Early Learning Goals (ELGs) and achieve a Good Level of Development (GLD). During parents evenings your child's class teacher will discuss their progress.
Our curriculum must meet the needs of our children, including our disadvantaged pupils and those with SEND, so we spend time observing and evaluating how children are learning. This is achieved through talking to children, looking at their work, observing their learning experiences and analysing data and progress of year groups, classes, groups and individuals. Every member of staff uses ongoing observational assessments to identify children’s starting points and plan experiences which ensure progress. This assessment is tracked using our in-house assessment trackers 3 times a year, teachers update the progress children have made which allows us to assess the impact of teaching. Evidence of children’s learning including observations and parent contributions are recorded on Tapestry. Children use this as a tool to reflect on their progress through pupil voice.
During their time in our EYFS, children make rapid progress so that they can meet the national expectation for GLD by the end of the year. We believe our high standards are due to the enriched play-based exploration alongside the rigour of assessment and teaching the children have as they move through the early years – a rich diet of balanced learning experiences is undoubtedly the best way to develop happy, curious children.
The Early Years provision at Westwood Primary School ensures that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe whilst learning how to take risks. It promotes teaching and learning that gives children the broad range of knowledge and skills that provide the right foundation for good future progress through school and life. Our early years setting follows the curriculum as outlined in the 2021 statutory framework of the EYFS.
There are four guiding principles that shape our practice in early years at Westwood Primary School. These are:
• 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. The education and care of all children in early years’ provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)
There are seven areas of learning and development that shape our educational programmes at Westwood Primary School. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. There are three areas that 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
We also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied. The specific areas are:
· understanding the world
· expressive arts and design
Staff plan activities and experiences for children that enable children to develop and learn effectively. In order to do this, practitioners working with the youngest children are expected to focus strongly on the 3 prime areas.
Staff also take into account the individual needs, interests, and stage of development of each child in their care, and use this information to plan a challenging and enjoyable experience. Where a child may have a special educational need or disability, staff consider whether specialist support is required, linking with relevant services from other agencies, where appropriate.
In planning and guiding children’s activities, practitioners reflect on the different ways that children learn and include these in their practice.
Each area of learning and development is implemented through planned, purposeful play, and through a mix of adult-led and child-initiated activities. Practitioners respond to each child’s emerging needs and interests, guiding their development through warm, positive interactions. As children grow older, and as their development allows, the balance gradually shifts towards more adult-led activities to help children prepare for more formal learning, ready for year 1.