Our Early Years Curriculum
Whitstone Foundation Stage
Learn, Grow & Achieve Together
Whitstone Foundation Stage provides a happy, safe and caring environment where children feel secure, giving them the firm foundation on which their future learning can be built.
We encourage children to become independent and confident learners, to explore and discover things for themselves whilst supporting them to enable them to make connections in their learning.
We provide opportunities for exploration and investigation, space to learn and embed new skills in both indoor and outdoor learning environments that stimulate the children’s imaginations and support their development.
The Early Years Foundation Stage
Our Foundation Stage is made up of Nursery and Reception children aged 3 – 5 years and is known collectively as ‘The Early Years Foundation Stage’ (EYFS). The Nursery children are also referred to as FS1 and children in their Reception year as FS2.
The EYFS is a vitally important stage of children’s early development as it is during these years that children begin to develop the learning attitudes, skills, social integration and independence on which they will build the rest of their education.
We provide high quality, purposefully planned play opportunities that enable children to learn and flourish. Our spacious indoor and outdoor learning areas enable children to be active learners, become independent and develop critical thinking skills.
We place equal importance on both the inside and outside environments ensuring that each area stimulates the children’s imaginations.
The Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is divided into two main areas: The Prime Areas of Learning and The Specific Areas of learning. Each area is divided into sub categories. The Prime Areas of learning are vitally important as these provide the basic systems and foundations which are essential to support learning in all the other areas.
The Prime Areas of Learning:
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Communication and Language
The Specific Areas of Learning:
Understanding of the World
Expressive Arts and Design
We teach the children using a topic based, creative approach which enables the children to make strong links between areas of learning. The whole school uses the Cornerstones Curriculum which provides exciting, stimulating and highly-engaging learning topics and is adapted to suit our children in Whitstone through our GROW Curriculum Values.
The topics fully capture the children’s imaginations and foster a love of learning through exciting learning experiences prompted by rich resources, along with an inquiry approach to learning.
EYFS Topic Cycles
Knowledge and Skills Progression Maps
Wild Tribe & Beach Tribe
We highly value the positive impact of learning outdoors and the benefits this brings to enhancing health and wellbeing of children, as well as encouraging them to be more active.
Our EYFS pupils have regular Wild Tribe sessions. The children learn from a young age to manage risks through use of tools, working together through team work challenges, gain appreciation and respect for nature and the impact that humans have on the environment and become more confident with raised self esteem.
We provide real life experiences in the outdoors by taking the curriculum outside where children are able to gain more inspiration in their writing and apply key social skills back in the classroom. We use our school woodland and garden area, large school field with wooded area and fire pit circle, the local woodlands and the local beaches for Beach Tribe!