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Our Lady and St John's Catholic Primary School

We Love, Learn and Live with Jesus

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Early Years Foundation Stage

Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)



Welcome to the Early Years Foundation Stage at Our Lady and St John’s Catholic Primary School


The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is the curriculum that is followed in our nursery and reception class. Each class is staffed by a fully qualified teacher and a full time teaching assistant. 


How is your child going to learn?


Learning through Play


Play is extremely important in the Early Years Foundation Stage. Through play children learn about themselves and the world around them. Therefore, we learn through play in the EYFS. The most effective type of play is where the child chooses the resources and what to do with them (child initiated play).


The context for the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum at Our Lady and St John’s is based on the seven areas of learning. All seven areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. These three areas are called the prime areas. There are also four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied.


Prime areas

  • Communication and Language
  • Physical Development
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development


Specific areas

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design


The Foundation Stage is not about teaching isolated topics generated by teachers. It is about observing and reflecting on the children‘s spontaneous play and using these observations and assessments in order to plan challenging activities that build on, and extend children’s learning. For example, in conjunction with the children’s interests this year we have covered topics such as transport, superheroes and fairytales. It is important to remember that children learn more rapidly before they reach the age of five than at any other time in their lives. The EYFS daily timetable and the learning environment are organised to best support the way in which young children learn. All the toys/activities we set out for the children are cleverly planned for a purpose. For example, the train track maybe set out with adult support to develop turn taking.