Early Years Foundation Stage

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is the time in your child's life between birth and age 5.  It is an exciting time when your child develops more rapidly than at any other time in their lives.  You will know that sometimes it seems your child does something new every day!  Children develop in different ways and their development is not a linear or automatic process.  We are constantly learning more about this period of life too as research sheds light on how children develop.

At St. Thomas Pre-School, we believe that these formative years need to be happy, active and exciting, preparing your child for their future learning and successes.  What happens early really does matter for a lifetime.  In pre-school, we focus on the seven areas of learning and development which are covered in the EYFS.  These are divided into three 'prime' areas and four 'specific' areas.

The prime areas are:

  • Personal, Social & Emotional Development

  • Communication and Language

  • Physical Development

All three are core foundations of your child's development, and are time-sensitive because of the biological factors enabling rapid brain connections to be made.  Everyday moments bring opportunities for children to experience feelings and develop their sense of self and others, to learn to communicate with and to understand others, and to physically engage through their movements and senses.  Providing children with rich opportunities for learning through their play means children make meaningful and personal connections in these interlinked skills.  That is what happens many times over in a 'typical' day at Pre-school.



It is upon these prime areas that four specific areas of learning and development are hinged.  These are:

  • Literacy

  • Mathematics

  • Understanding the World

  • Expressive Arts and Design

Children's learning is never compartmentalised, and we believe that it is crucial to help children learn how to learn.  Your unique child has unique characteristics that we work with to help them find out and explore, be curious, have a go, keep trying, stay involved and motivated, have their own ideas, make links, and enjoy what they have achieved.  It is these skills which help children become strong learners.

For more information on the EYFS areas and how you can support your children's development, please click here to download 'What to expect in the Early Years Foundation Stage: a guide for parents'.

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