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Our Lady & St. Gerard's

R.C. Primary School

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Early Years Foundation Stage


Nursery and Reception classes have their own class pages with lots of information about the curriculum and the range of activities they engage in.


In March 2021, Our Lady and St Gerard’s Reception class was awarded for the ‘Step Outside’ programme. The benefits of the changes have impacted the children's independence and learning outcomes. The children have more opportunities to move objects around as we have created more spaces for them to take things to- giving them the options for creating different role play situations. The provision of extra resources have given the children increased open-ended activities.


Please have a look at the attached PowerPoint :) 

Early Years Information:


In the Reception and Nursery Years, children work within the new (non statutory) EYFS Development Matters 2020 towards achieving the Early Learning Goals.  Children develop key skills, acquire new knowledge and demonstrate 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. These are:



*Understanding the world; and 

*Expressive arts and design.


These 7 areas are used to plan your child’s learning experiences and activities both indoors and outside. Children in the EYFS learn by playing and exploring, being active, and through creative and critical thinking and at our school we make sure that the activities and opportunities available for the children are suited to their unique needs. Through a variety of child-friendly and child-initiated themes children acquire the skills, knowledge and understanding that help them to achieve their Early Learning Goals. 

Changes to the EYFS curriculum September 2021:

From September 2021 the Early Years Foundation team will be following the statutory EYFS framework and using non- statutotry Development Matters document as a support. 

Please spend a few minutes to identify the changes as mentioned below.


  • to make all 17 ELGs clearer, more specific and easier for teachers to make accurate judgements
  • to focus on strengthening language and vocabulary development to particularly support disadvantaged children
  • To strengthen literacy and numeracy outcomes to ensure all children have a good grasp of these areas of learning in preparation for year 1.
  • ELGs are based on the latest evidence in childhood development.


  • PSED has additional information on self-care and healthy eating, which used to come under Physical Development.
  • Physical Development has been strengthened to include a greater focus on development from birth to reception and on the link between gross and fine motor skills.
  • Literacy includes a stronger emphasis on pre-reception literacy learning, and the link between language comprehension and later reading and writing.
  • Maths provides a focus on helping children develop a stronger grounding in number, as well as greater detail on the importance of shapes, spatial reasoning and measure as part of early maths learning. 
  • Understanding the World includes wider experiences for children, including visits to the local area.
  • Expressive Arts and Design has a wider variety of ways children can develop their creative skills.
  • Communication and language programme remains as originally proposed.
  • Technology has now been removed from the framework, however within our EYFS team we will continue to assess children in this area of development.


Early Learning Goals

  • Communication and Language has a focus on adult-child interactions, and the word ‘accurate’ has been removed from the Speaking ELG when referring to tenses.
  • Mathematics has a greater clarity to counting and comparing quantities in the Numerical Patterns ELG. Its focus on number and numerical patterns within the mathematics ELGs as the strongest predictor for later maths outcomes. Teachers will also continue to teach children about shape, space and measure as part of a well-rounded curriculum. The new EYFS has the hope that children will start year 1 with a strong and confident foundation in number.
  • Understanding the World includes a change in relation to the Past and Present ELG to further clarify the expectation of children understanding the concept of ‘past’.
  • Expressive Arts and Design allows children to use a variety of use of tools, materials and techniques that children will need to demonstrate for the Creating with Materials ELG.



Assessment has slightly changed. In nursery, the children will be assessed termly- this is done when they start (baseline), Autumn 2 (Christmas), Spring and end of Summer. There will be no emerging, developing or secure terms used anymore. The children will either ‘be on track’ or ‘not on track’. Teachers however, will be expected to continue to identify and stretch more able children.

This also applies to the Reception class as well.

We will still continue to hold Early Years parents evenings within the Autumn and Spring term. This will give parents and teachers a chance to discuss the children’s progress.


Please click on the link below for the new Early Years document. 



Induction evening for prospective parents


If you would like to see the classroom environment and learning opportunities for your child to start in September 2024 please come and visit us on the 26th of September from 5-6pm.


To ensure the transition from Reception to Year 1 is smooth and easy for the children we teach the children certain topics that relate to the National Curriculum. 

The children also get opportunities to visit their new classroom within the Summer term. 


PRIME AREASCommunication and languageChildren listen attentively in a range of situations. They listen to stories, accurately anticipating key events and respond to what they hear with relevant comments, questions or actions. They give their attention to what others say and respond appropriately, while engaged in another activity.
Children follow instructions involving several ideas or actions. They answer ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions about their experiences and in response to stories or events.
Children express themselves effectively, showing awareness of listeners’ needs. They use past, present and future forms accurately when talking about events that have happened or are to happen in the future. They develop their own narratives and explanations by connecting ideas or events.
Physical developmentChildren show good control and co-ordination in large and small movements. They move confidently in a range of ways, safely negotiating space. They handle equipment and tools effectively, including pencils for writing.
Children know the importance for good health of physical exercise, and a healthy diet, and talk about ways to keep healthy and safe. They manage their own basic hygiene and personal needs successfully, including dressing and going to the toilet independently.
Personal, social and emotional developmentChildren are confident to try new activities, and say why they like some activities more than others. They are confident to speak in a familiar group, will talk about their ideas, and will choose the resources they need for their chosen activities. They say when they do or don’t need help.
Children talk about how they and others show feelings, talk about their own and others’ behaviour, and its consequences, and know that some behaviour is unacceptable. They work as part of a group or class, and understand and follow the rules. They adjust their behaviour to different situations, and take changes of routine in their stride.
Children play co-operatively, taking turns with others. They take account of one another’s ideas about how to organise their activity. They show sensitivity to others’ needs and feelings, and form positive relationships with adults and other children.
SPECIFIC AREASLiteracyChildren read and understand simple sentences. They use phonic knowledge to decode regular words and read them aloud accurately. They also read some common irregular words. They demonstrate understanding when talking with others about what they have read.
Children use their phonic knowledge to write words in ways which match their spoken sounds. They also write some irregular common words. They write simple sentences which can be read by themselves and others. Some words are spelt correctly and others are phonetically plausible.
MathematicsChildren count reliably with numbers from 1 to 20, place them in order and say which number is one more or one less than a given number. Using quantities and objects, they add and subtract two single-digit numbers and count on or back to find the answer. They solve problems, including doubling, halving and sharing.
Children use everyday language to talk about size, weight, capacity, position, distance, time and money to compare quantities and objects and to solve problems. They recognise, create and describe patterns. They explore characteristics of everyday objects and shapes and use mathematical language to describe them.
Understanding the worldChildren talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members. They know that other children don’t always enjoy the same things, and are sensitive to this. They know about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and among families, communities and traditions.
Children know about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials and living things. They talk about the features of their own immediate environment and how environments might vary from one another. They make observations of animals and plants and explain why some things occur, and talk about changes.
Expressive arts and designChildren sing songs, make music and dance, and experiment with ways of changing them. They safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function.
Children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through design and technology, art, music, dance, role-play and stories.

Literacy- mark making

Role play, speaking, ICT and making relationships

Mathematical Development

Ongoing EYFS Policy 2023