Washingwell Community Primary School

Achievement for all

Early Years

Early Years Foundation Stage



In the early years at Washingwell we want children to be happy, confident, well rounded individuals with a love for learning.  We are committed to providing the best possible start to their school life, teaching them skills and providing experiences which will ensure their well-being now and success in the future


We provide all children with a safe and stimulating environment that builds on each individual’s wants, needs and interests. Children are given the opportunity to learn through play as well as through focused adult led activities. Adults provide high quality interactions and are role models for learning. Learning is fun, engaging and suitably challenging. We also value the importance of learning through the outdoors and believe that it offers children the opportunity to develop their thinking and problem solving skills further.


Our Early Years Curriculum:

High quality early years education is about so much more than just learning numbers and letters. It is about developing the whole child – learning to be confident, sociable, independent and inquisitive. It is about having a positive attitude and forming positive relationships. What your child learns during their Nursery and Reception years will build upon the experiences they have already learnt at home. Young children learn by watching and doing, by exploring and investigating, by listening and speaking, by creating and experimenting. If children learn to ‘have a go’ they can learn from their mistakes and not be afraid to try again.


Our school bases the core work in Nursery and Reception around the Early Years Foundation Stage for 0 to 5 year olds:


All aspects of children’s growth and development are woven together but they can be separated into 7 different areas of learning. The 7 areas are split into 3 prime areas (these are the areas the children should mostly develop first and 4 specific areas (these will develop as the child grows.)


The Prime Areas:


  1. Communication and Language: Involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
  2. Physical development: Involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control and movement.  Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
  3. Personal, social and emotional development: Involves  helping children to develop a positive  sense  of  themselves  and  to others;  to  form  positive  relationships  and  develop  respect  for  others;  to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.


The Specific areas:


  1. Literacy: Involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write.  Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books,   poems   and   other   written materials) to ignite their interests
  2. Mathematics: Involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their social skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and to describe shapes, spaces and measures.
  3. Understanding the World: Involves  guiding  children  to  make  sense  of  their  physical  world  and  their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
  4. Expressive arts and design: Involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role play and design and technology.


These 7 areas are used to plan children’s learning experiences, with activities that match individual needs.


Please click below to see the relevant annual overview for your child: