At St Patrick’s we passionately believe that:
“Every child deserves the best possible start in life and support to fulfil their potential. A child’s experience in the early years has a major impact on their future life chances. A secure, safe and happy childhood is important in its own right, and it provides the foundation for children to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up.”
“Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage”, Department for Children, Schools and Families, 2007
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) at St Patrick’s Catholic Primary School includes the nursery class, which children may join at the start of the term after they turn three, and the reception class.
The EYFS is based upon four principles:
- A Unique Child
- Positive Relationships
- Enabling Environments
- Learning and Development
A Unique Child
At St Patrick’s we recognise that every child is a competent learner who can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured. We recognise that children develop in individual ways, at varying rates. Children’s attitudes and dispositions to learning are influenced by feedback from others; we use praise and encouragement, as well as celebration and rewards, to encourage children to develop a positive attitude to learning.
At St Patrick’s we recognise that children learn to be strong and independent from secure relationships. We aim to develop caring, respectful, professional relationships with the children and their families.
At St Patrick’s we recognise that the environment plays a key role in supporting and extending the children’s development. Through observation and interaction we continuously assess the children’s interests, stages of development and next steps for learning, and plan challenging, achievable activities and experiences to enable children to progress quickly. In this way, assessment and planning forms a continuous cycle to promote children’s well-being, learning and development.
Learning and Development
The Foundation Unit is organised to allow children to explore and learn securely and safely. There are areas where the children can be active, or be quiet and rest. The unit is set up in learning areas, where children are able to find activities, equipment and resources independently. Provision in these areas includes familiar and continuously accessible activities and resources, as well as activities which are varied and enhanced to fit in with current themes and learning needs. Each day is composed of playing and learning through of a balance of teaching, adult-led activities and child-initiated time.
At St Patrick’s we aim to nurture children and help them to learn, and develop a love of learning, within a happy, caring and positive environment.