Harefield Primary School EYFS Curriculum Intent
The objective of our Early Years curriculum is to engage with children and parents to create happy, independent, confident, inquisitive learners who thrive in their new environment, using opportunities to follow their own interests, both indoor and outdoor. This will ensure that all pupils get optimum benefit from their experiences in the EYFS.
We want pupils to develop skills, knowledge and interests through child centred experiences and themes that engage and excite them. We encourage active learning to ensure the children are motivated and interested. We understand that this is not possible without parental engagement, which we start as early as possible through taster sessions, workshops and early introduction of Tapestry. Parents are encouraged to make contributions to their child’s learning journey through Tapestry and paper ‘WOW moments’.
We aim to ensure that our practice reflects these seven key features:
- The best for every child – we want every child to be the best they can be.
- High-quality care – children’s experience is always at the heart of everything we do.
- The curriculum – what we want children to learn.
- Pedagogy – how we are helping children to learn.
- Assessment – checking what children have learnt and adapting our provision.
- Self-regulation and executive function – helping children to develop their resilience and skills to self-regulate, manage their feelings and emotions etc.
- Partnership with parents – valuing parents as children’s first educators.
Our ambitious curriculum is clearly structured to allow a broad, balanced and progressive learning across all 7 areas of learning and development. The children will learn new skills and acquire new knowledge and demonstrate their new understanding in child-initiated time. Planning for this curriculum is designed to be flexible so that each child’s unique needs and interests are supported.
We have followed the expectations set out in the statutory documents and non-statutory curriculum guidance, but have placed a particular focus on the prime areas and literacy. We embed the right habits for learning through the Characteristics of Effective Learning to help our pupils develop their understanding of how they learn and prepare them for the rest of their educational journey at Harefield and beyond.
The values that have guided our decisions about our curriculum are our PRIDE values: - Prepared, Respectful, Involved, Determined, Everyday. Pupil engagement and enjoyment in learning is at the core of everything we do. With this, we are determined to ensure that all children achieve the best possible progress across all areas of learning and development. Our children take PRIDE in their learning, behaviour and our school community. They learn by playing and exploring, being active and through creative and critical thinking, both indoors and outdoors.
Our school is set in the context of a tight-knit community with little movement in and out of the estate. We have a high percentage of pupil premium children and a history of children entering reception year with low oral starting points. Our ambitious curriculum, enabling environment and warm adult interactions support the children in developing their communication and language skills. We put a very strong emphasis on helping children to extend their vocabulary through carefully planned story time and literacy sessions. We also use ‘Talk Through Stories’ as part of our literacy provision. Our book nook collection includes high-quality texts, both fiction and non-fiction. Story time is a very important part of our day because we want our children to develop a love of reading, foster their imagination, enhance their communication skills and increase their cultural understanding.
Harefield Primary School EYFS Curriculum Implementation
Our curriculum follows the Early Years Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage, updated September 2021. Through our professional knowledge of each pupil and formative assessments, we plan and provide exciting and engaging activities and enhancements that will move the children’s learning forward and close gaps. We value and follow children’s interests in child-initiated time as we believe that this approach is crucial in the early years. It boosts children’s self-esteem and confidence, and motivates them to learn new things. They are able to practise skills, and build upon and revisit prior learning and experience at their own level and pace. Our pupils learn to explore, adapt, negotiate, communicate, discuss, review, investigate and ask questions. Both teachers and teaching assistants take an active role in child initiated play through observing, modelling, facilitating and extending their play.
We ensure that there is a right balance of child-initiated and adult-led activities across the day. Our timetable is reviewed and updated regularly to make sure that we meet the children’s needs and prepare them for more structured learning in Year 1.
In order to implement our intent we ensure that our teaching staff are equipped with the professional development to deliver our curriculum (coaching and training). Objective Led Planning is used to target children during continuous provision. We have a clear understanding of children’s ‘next Steps’ and where possible find opportunities in play to achieve individual children’s current targets.
Our curriculum is broad, balanced and progressive, and builds for each pupil from their individual starting points. Early identification of pupils that need extra support ensures that targeted support is given immediately. Pupils’ next steps and attainment as well as our provision are reviewed and discussed regularly to make sure that all pupils make rapid progress.
Effective and focused intervention are provided for those children who are finding learning challenging and are not on track to meet expectations at the end of the year. Support is provided in an inclusive way and support from parents is also enlisted at an early stage to ensure that the children have every chance to achieve the Early Learning Goals.
Pupils’ WOW moments are shared with parents daily using the Tapestry online system. This means that parents can engage with children regularly about their learning and can contribute to the knowledge we have of the child in school. We celebrate diversity and enjoy learning about each child, their families, where they’re from and what festivals they celebrate. Children get regular opportunities to share their WOW moments from home with their peers and teachers.
Harefield Primary School Curriculum Impact
The impact of our curriculum will be reflected in having well rounded, happy and confident children transitioning into Year 1. We want all our children make accelerated progress from their starting points. Every child at Harefield Primary School is recognised as a unique individual and as such, we endeavour to celebrate our differences within school and with the local community. We strive to ensure that children leave Early Years as confident, enthusiastic and adaptable learners, ready to start their journey in Key Stage One.
The teaching and pedagogy are reviewed and evaluated regularly through fortnightly team meetings. The areas we discuss are reflected in changes and developments in our everyday practice. The Early Years provision has a rigorous plan for development each year. This is monitored and evaluated by the EYFS Leader, the Headteacher and Senior Leadership Team.