Early Years Foundation Stage

Development Matters is the non-statutory curriculum guidance for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) which came into effect on the 1st of September 2021.It guides practitioners through the different ways in which children learn helping them to devise an effective curriculum for learning, building upon their individual strengths and meeting the needs of each child.

The EYFS has been divided up into 6 age ranges from birth to 71 months. These are known as Range 1 to 6. For more information go to and download the Development Matters or for a copy of Birth to 5. The Department of Education have also produced ‘What to Expect in the Early Years Foundation Stage’, which guides parents through what to expect with their childs’ development.

The foundation stage is divided into three prime areas including;

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

These three areas develop quickly in response to relationships and experiences offered to children and support their development in all other areas.
The four specific areas of learning include;

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

These are essential skills and knowledge for children to participate in society.

Observations and Assessments

All children at the setting have a Key Worker assigned to them and it is their role to observe the children as they act and interact in their play, everyday activities and planned activities. From these observations practitioners decide how best to support, extend and teach the children.Activities are planned which will take the children onto the next steps together, these take into account their interests, and if specific activities are being planned for a specific experience, or activity to teach a skill or develop their knowledge.It is important for children to be able to engage in back and forth conversations and have the opportunity to extend, deepen play interactions, and learning in partnership with others. We capture this development by taking photographs of them engaged in the activities and daily experiences and adding these into their development file, as well as their EYFS development records, which are completed each term detailing their development progress.