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This document is a statement of the aims, principles, and strategies for the teaching, learning and assessment Early Years at Woodcote Primary School.


Our teaching is based on inquiry, exploratory and holistic learning which we believe is best achieved through providing the opportunity to self-select. We strongly believe that learning through play is an important part of a child's early development.

We aim to provide an environment that fosters curiosity and a sense of wonder and allows children to flourish. Through working alongside children in their child-initiated play, we will enable children to become self-motivated, self-disciplined, confident and independent thinkers. By giving the children a voice through choice, opinion, feelings and emotions, we believe children will learn that they are important and valued.

We aim to establish meaningful links to the local community both inside and outside of the school learning environment. We believe in building a successful learning community which celebrates diversity.

We value highly the opportunities outdoor learning provides and how this enhances other curriculum areas as well as promoting personal growth and a sense of well-being.

Curriculum/Scheme of Work

The Early Years Foundations Stage is built on the following four guiding themes. They provide a context for the requirements and describe how practitioners should support the development, learning and care of young children. Each theme is broken down into four commitments describing how the principles can be put into practise.

1. A Unique Child recognises that every child is a competent learner. The commitments are focussed around development, inclusion, safety, health and wellbeing.

2. Positive Relationships describe how the child learns to be strong and independent from a base of loving relationships. The commitments are focused around respect, partnership with parents, supporting learning and the role of the key person.

3. Enabling Environments explains that the environment plays a key role in supporting and extending children’s learning and development. The commitments are focused around observation, assessment and planning; support for every child; the learning environment; and in the wider context – transitions, continuity and multi-agency working.

4. Learning and Development recognises that children learn in different ways and at different rate, and that all areas of learning and development are equally important and interconnected. This principles approach ensures that the EYFS meets the overarching aim of improving outcomes and reflects that it is every child’s right to grow up safe, healthy, enjoying and achieving, making a positive contribution, and with economic wellbeing.


Using the EYFS we produce long and medium-term planning. These are broad topics for each half term which are flexible enough to be adapted to suit the needs and interests of the children and any changes in circumstances. broad topics. It gives an overview of the themes, topics and enquiries that are going to be covered over the coming months and notes of any special events and occasions that are planned.  Teachers will be tuned in to what is interesting to their children based on what they know about the children and their observations of how the children like to learn, including from discussions with parents. This is then used to produce weekly plans. These will be based on the theme, topic or enquiry and the observations/assessments of the children. These plans need to be flexible, enabling practitioners to take advantage of spontaneous opportunities when they present themselves and the changing interests of the children. Short-term planning must respond to children’s individual needs and include interventions as appropriate.


We will aim to provide a wide range of experiences and opportunities that will allow children to learn and develop across every area of learning. We believe teaching in early years is  about knowing your children, knowing what makes them tick and how to hook them into learning, ensuring children are taught new skills, gain new knowledge and have the opportunity to practise and apply this knowledge in a contextualised and meaningful manner (play), providing a well-planned environment to ensure they can do this as well as explore and find out for themselves, and constantly assessing and planning for next steps.

We aim daily for short adult-led focused inputs which can either be for the whole class or groups, to teach key skills in phonics and maths. This does not have to be formal and can include number rhymes, songs, and games. These inputs can be followed up with short adult-led activities 2/3 times each week. Opportunities to practise new skills through play are encouraged in different areas of the provision either independently or with adult support.


We aim to use a range of strategies to differentiate the learning in our early years classrooms.

  1. Daily interaction with children during their play
  2. The classroom environment
  3. Differentiate learning outcomes


Most of our assessments are made on an on-going basis through daily observations and interactions that give the teacher knowledge about what the child has learned or can do already to help the child move on in their learning. In reception, we do a more formal assessment during the final term that sums up’ all the different information from on-going assessments that have been made about the child. This information is added to a record of children’s achievement which is related to the Early Years Foundation Stage Profile (EYFSP) – showing the levels different children have achieved in the seven areas of learning and development in the Revised EYFS. We will use our online Learning Journal Tapestry to help inform us when making assessments. 

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