Care and Learning
The Early Years curriculum is a progressive and developmental programme that outlines the key milestones in a child’s development from birth to five.
At Berkhamsted Day Nursery our partnership with our colleagues in the Pre-Prep enables us to plan for and support each child through these first years and in readiness for school nursery and Reception.
Positive relationships are key and as such our focus from their first day in nursery is to ensure that a secure attachment with each child is established, not only with their key worker but with every member of staff. We want our children to feel part of an extended family with all the love and care that comes with that. Hugs and cuddles are very much part of the day and the children very quickly thrive on the attention and nurture given by our very competent team of practitioners. We hope to become part of your extended family too as we get to know you in addition to getting to know your child, enabling us to work in partnership to develop and grow your child together.
Our children are recognised as individuals and we spend time getting to know their personality and what engages them as early learners.
Our children are recognised as individuals and we spend time getting to know their personality and what engages them as early learners. That moment when a child makes a connection and pieces together their life experiences is very special and a joy to behold.
Creating an environment that is stimulating and inviting ensures that each day our children come into their setting excited and curious. We plan our provision to encourage active participation and active learning, supporting the children to develop using the four principles of the EYFS:
- A Unique Child – This is based on the principle that every child is a competent learner and can be resilient, capable and confident.
- Positive Relationships – This highlights the importance of children having loving and secure relationships with parents and carers, in order to become strong and independent.
- Enabling Environments – This recognises the key role a child’s environment plays in supporting and extending children’s development and learning.
- Learning and Development – This is based on the knowledge that children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates and that all areas of learning are interconnected and equally important.
The Early Year Foundation Stage (EYFS) is a government document which sets the standards for learning, development and care for children from birth to five.
It details all the legal requirements, the principles that practitioners need to put into their practice and information on supporting children’s progression through the seven areas of learning and development.
The Four Principles:
These are what the staff and setting integrate into their daily practice.
A Unique Child:
This is based on the principle that every child is a competent learner and can be resilient, capable and confident.
This highlights the importance of children having loving and secure relationships with parents and carers, in order to become strong and independent.
This recognises the key role a child’s environment plays in supporting and extending their development and learning.
Learning and Development:
This is based on the knowledge that children develop and learn in different ways and that all areas of learning are interconnected and equally important.
These areas combine together to make up the skills, knowledge and experiences that babies and children acquire as they grow, learn and develop. The prime areas are Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Physical Development and Communication and Language. These are fundamental because they work together to support development in the other areas. The developmental statements in these areas help practitioners to identify and plan for the children’s individual interests and abilities.
Personal, Social and Emotional Development:
This area looks at supporting children to develop a sense of themselves, social skills and respect for others and a positive disposition to learn. Children’s emotional well-being also needs to be supported in order to help them understand and manage their feelings and behaviour.
This area looks at supporting children in using their senses and bodies to explore the world around them and make connections between new and existing knowledge. They should have the chance to be active and interact with things to improve their skills of coordination, control, manipulation and movement. Children also need to develop an understanding of healthy living practices.
Communication and Language:
This area looks at supporting children’s developing competence in listening and understanding as well as speaking and communicating. Children should be given opportunities to build these skills and gain confidence to use them in a range of situations.
This area focuses on learning the skills needed for reading and writing.
This area looks at supporting children to develop their understanding of numbers, calculating, shapes, space and measures.
Understanding the World:
This area looks at supporting children in developing the knowledge, skills and understanding to help them make sense of their world. They should be able to explore creatures, people, plants and objects and undertake practical ‘experiments’.
Expressive Arts and Design:
This area looks at supporting children in developing their creativity by providing a range of opportunities, materials and media in which to express themselves and use their imaginations. The children should be encouraged to explore and share their thoughts, feelings and ideas.
Staff share an ambitious vision, with high expectations for what all children can achieve and ensure that high standards of learning and care are delivered.