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Princes Risborough Primary School

An Academy of the Great Learners Trust


Preschool Children's Learning

Early Years Foundation Stage 



Parents are children’s first and most enduring educators. When parents and practitioners work together in early years settings, the results have a positive impact on children’s development and learning

What is the Early Years Foundation Stage?

This is the stage in your child’s life that gets them ready and prepares them for school, as well as for their future learning and successes.

The EYFS was created to ensure your child’s first 5 years are happy, active, exciting, fun and secure, as well as to support their development, care and learning needs.

All nurseries, preschools, reception classes and childminders who are registered to deliver the EYFS must follow a legal document called the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework.

What is the EYFS Framework?

The EYFS Framework is there to support all professionals working in the Early Years age group. It has a large emphasis on the adult’s role in helping the children 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

  • The expected levels (Early Learning Goals) that your child should reach at the age of 5, which is usually at the end of their reception year.

How your child will be learning:

Your child will be learning skills, acquiring knowledge and demonstrating their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development.

Children should mostly develop the 3 prime areas first:

  • Communication and language

  • Physical development

  • 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:

  • Literacy

  • Mathematics

  • Understanding the world

  • Expressive arts and design


At preschool we will use these to plan your child’s learning and activities. Activities will be suited to your child’s unique ways. They will learn by ‘playing and exploring’, ‘active learning’ and through ‘creative and critical thinking’, which will take place indoors and outside.

Supporting communication and language


The development of children’s spoken language underpins all seven areas of learning and development. Our daily interactions and play based activities provide an interesting and language-rich environment for our children. Through reciprocal conversations, storytelling and role play we support the foundations of language and cognitive development.


Bucks Early Years Quality Assurance Standard  

In 2023 we renewed our Quality Assurance Accreditation from Bucks Early Years in Communication and Language support, and have developed our pedagogical style to be ‘chatty’ and ‘friendly’ which we know helps our children gain and progress their social and emotional skills; recognising their own emotions and those of others, to help them feel ‘Safe, Supported and Successful’. These skills are essential for children to become happy, confident, independent and inquisitive little learners.


Helicopter Stories and The Poetry Basket

Our twice weekly sessions are based on the Storytelling and Story Acting curriculum of renowned Early Years practitioner Vivian Gussin Paley. Children dictate their stories to an adult who scribes them, word for word. Once four or five stories are scribed all the children gather around a taped-out stage and the stories are acted out. This not only promotes children’s literacy and communication skills, but also their confidence and social and emotional development.


Volunteer Readers

During the afternoon sessions we welcome a volunteer reader to sit with the children in the book corner, to look at books and share their own enthusiasm and passion for reading. The children choose books to look at according to their own fascinations and interests. We have a wide range of fiction and non-fiction books to choose from.


Little Wandle (Letters and Sounds revised)

We follow the Foundations for Phonics element of the school phonics programme. This ensures children have well prepared listening skills before starting school. We use engaging games to teach phonemic awareness (letter sounds) and support language development and a love of books through:

• sharing a wide range of high-quality stories
• learning a variety of nursery rhymes and action rhymes
• providing activities that develop focused listening and attention
• giving attention to extending language with children