Parent Guide to the Early Years Foundation Stage

At Tops Day Nurseries we know that you are the most important person in your child’s life.  From you they will achieve their first steps in language and communication, develop their physical skills and become social and develop friendships.  We are here to support you and your child and it is important for us to work together to help your child develop to their full potential in the early years.  For you this means the opportunity to share information about your child’s growth and development both at home and at nursery.  This will be through observations and discussions and reviewing your child’s development on a regular basis.

What is the Early Years Foundation Stage?

The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) looks at the stages of development from birth to the end of the child’s first year in school (reception year).  These years see the greatest growth and learning for your child.


The EYFS is based on 4 overarching principles which shape good practice in early years settings:–

  • A unique child

Every child is a unique.  They are consistently learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.

  • Positive relationships

Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.

  • Enabling environments

Children learn and develop well in environments where their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and yourself as a parent and/or carer.

  • Children learn and develop in different ways and at different rates

The framework covers the education and care of your child within the early

years setting, including children with additional needs.


So what does this mean for you and your child?

The EYFS supports practitioners to provide play experiences that enable your child to expand their knowledge and skills to support their individual learning and development in their early years.  As practitioners we recognise your child’s strengths and areas they may need additional support with.  This support may come from within the nursery or from other professionals.

It is important for your child to feel secure in their surroundings, this is aided by having a ‘Key Person’ within the setting who will get to know you and your child well and build a strong and interactive relationship with you both.  Your child’s key person is based in your child’s unit and spends quality time with their key children as individuals and in their group.  If your child’s key person is unavailable other practitioners in the unit will be able to support you and your child as they will also have a good relationship with you both.


The activities and experiences that we provide for your child will underpin the skills they need to work towards the Early Learning Goals in the following 7 areas –


Prime Areas

  • Communication and language
  • Physical Development
  • Personal, social and emotional development


Specific Areas –

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding the World
  • Expressive Art and Design


We recognise that learning and development are important from birth.  The 7 areas within the EYFS are all of equal importance however for children under 3 years old the Prime areas are our focus.  These 3 Prime areas support your child’s initial skills and give them the basis to develop in the 4 Specific areas when in the Pre School.    Our staff are trained towards the highest qualifications in Early Years and use this knowledge and their experience to provide planned activities and projects. We extend your child’s learning through these and your involvement is paramount to achieve this.


In partnership with parents we will use our observations to plan future activities and projects which relate to children’s current interests, needs and the world around them.  This will help develop their independence and life skills for their future.


Your child has an individual learning journey where we record observations, videos, photos and other information that is kept as an on-going record of their developmental journey.  As a commitment to your child it is important that we regularly meet and discuss your child’s progress and look towards their future next steps.


Wherever your child is being cared for, whether at Tops Day Nursery or elsewhere, we will be following the same set of overarching principles within the EYFS framework.


Parents can apply for exemption for their child if they feel that the learning and development requirements of the EYFS, or some element(s) of it, conflict with their religious or philosophical convictions.


If you have any further questions about early education or the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) please talk to your child’s key person who will be able to offer further information.


If your child attends more than one setting, we would like to work with them to discuss your child’s development and work together to provide a cohesive care package for you and your child.

Posted in: 2 year olds, 3 & 4 year olds, Education, News from our Nurseries, Ofsted