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EYFS Curriculum

EYFS at Hornsea Community Primary School




At Hornsea Community Primary School, we provide a high-quality EYFS education giving children a secure and confident start to their school life. We are committed to nurturing a lifelong love of learning alongside the aims of the EYFS statutory framework. We strive for high standards, consider the development of the whole child and seek to foster resilience and independence. We aim to provide the essential knowledge that children need to prepare them for their future success and to give children the best possible start to their early education.

We provide inviting classroom environments indoors and outdoors to stimulate learners and engage them in developing the three ‘Characteristics of Effective Learning’ as set out within the EYFS.


Staffing & Organisation

At Hornsea Community Primary School, we have three Reception classes which can cater for up to 90 children. Each class has a class teacher and a minimum of 2 Teaching Assistants. 

Children come to our school from a range of nurseries including Hornsea Nursery which is located on our school site.


What we believe…

We firmly believe in our motto: ‘Happy Children Progress & Succeed’ because happy children learn, thrive and develop.

We carefully plan our EYFS curriculum to meet the following aims:

 • Foster a love of learning which inspires curiosity.

• Provide a language rich environment and a love for reading.  

• Ensure all children have access to high quality learning opportunities.

• Provide parents/carers with the opportunity to develop their child’s learning at home.

• Develop knowledge and understanding of the community and wider world.





• Quality first teaching across all areas of the curriculum.

• Stimulating learning environments indoors and outdoors.

• Well planned and organised continuous provision which allows the children to learn through play.

• A carefully planned balance of adult-led and child-initiated learning opportunities.

• We promote a love of learning through real life experiences and opportunities to build on prior learning.

• Close links with local nurseries which support a smooth and settled transition into school.

• Developing strong parental partnerships which empower parents to support their child’s learning at home.

• Systematic approaches to teaching reading to ensure all children learn to read. High quality phonics teaching is started within the first few weeks of the children starting in reception.

• Opportunities for children and families to develop a love of reading.

 • Planned opportunities for outdoor learning through ‘Woodland World’ and within our school grounds.




  • High levels of engagement and motivation demonstrated from children which supports them to become lifelong learners.
  • Confident and capable readers who demonstrate a love of reading.
  • Evidence of strong links with parents.
  • Children demonstrate the characteristics of effective learning and are well prepared for the next stage in their learning.
  • Children feel happy and safe and enjoy coming to school.
  • All children access a balanced and challenging curriculum regardless of their background, needs or abilities.
  • Children make good progress from their starting points and are ready for their transition into KS1 by the end of July.
  • Children are supported by adults that are well trained and passionate about providing the best education for every child.
  • The percentage of children achieving the GLD within the EYFSP is in line with or above the national average.


Learning in the EYFS


Play, Scaffolding, Modelling, Observing, Guided Learning, Direct Teaching

In our classrooms, you may see children playing alone or with their peers, deciding on resources and choosing how to spend their time. You may see a child playing and listening to an adult, who is modelling how to achieve something or teaching a new skill that interests the child. Adults may scaffold a child’s play. This involves taking their play to higher levels of learning, entering the play as a cocreator and helping to provoke a framework for the children to go from “what they know” to “what else they could know”. Scaffolding enables a child to solve a problem, carry out a task or achieve a goal which is just beyond his or her abilities. During play, where foundational social and emotional skills are developed, scaffolding is a bridge to new skill levels using three key ingredients; modelling the skill, giving clues and asking questions while the child is trying out a new skill, and then as the child approaches mastery, withdrawing the support.


The EYFS statutory framework does not prescribe a particular teaching approach.

“Play is essential for children’s development, building their confidence as they learn to explore, relate to others, set their own goals and solve problems. Children learn by leading their own play, and by taking part in play which is guided by adults.”

At Hornsea Community Primary School, the EYFS team carefully plan what the children learn in the classroom and through provision enables them to learn from their interests, alongside extending their knowledge and understanding through direct teaching.

Each day, we stimulate children’s interests, respond to each child’s emerging needs and guide their development through warm, positive interactions coupled with secure routines for play and learning.

As the children develop and their skills progress throughout the reception year, we use more direct teaching and modelling and plan specific sequences of lessons. These strategies help us to focus on teaching the essential skills and knowledge in the specific areas of learning so that the children can develop the skills and confidence required for the end of their reception year.


Seven Key Features of Effective Practice


The Curriculum

  • The curriculum is well planned to ensure we identify ‘what we want’ the children at to learn.
  • We ensure planning helps every child to develop their language skills.
  • The curriculum is ambitious. Careful sequencing will help children to build their learning over time.
  • Planning is flexible to ensure children’s interests are used to drive the children’s learning and development.
  • We ensure that depth in early learning is achieved through spending time embedding the children’s learning.



• Every child is enabled to make progress in their learning, with the right support and with reasonable adjustments.

• We utilise different approaches to learning to ensure all children make progress. Children learn through play, by adults modelling, by observing each other, and through guided learning and direct teaching.

• Practitioners carefully organise enabling environments for high-quality play.

• Children in our early years also learn through group work, when practitioners guide their learning. • As the children develop throughout the year they are given more guided learning.

• We have a well-planned learning environment, indoors and outdoors.



• Assessments are completed to inform planning and support the practitioners in identifying children who need additional support.

• Assessment is based upon a secure knowledge of child development.

• Practitioners have a clear expectation about what children need to know and how best to support them in developing their learning.

• Accurate assessment is used to highlight whether a child has a special educational need or needs additional interventions.

 • Tapestry is used to record an electronic learning journey for each child as well as to provide a home-school link for Parents and Carers.



As part of our ‘Personal, Social, Emotional Development’ teaching provision we support each child’s ability to:

  • hold information in mind
  • focus their attention
  • think flexibly
  • inhibit impulsive behaviour.

These abilities contribute to the child’s growing ability to self-regulate:

  • concentrate their thinking
  • plan what to do next
  • monitor what they are doing and adapt
  • regulate strong feelings
  • be patient for what they want
  • bounce back when things get difficult.


Partnership with parents

  • We ensure that parents/carers have a strong and respectful partnership in the early years which enables children to thrive.
  • We listen regularly to parents and give parents clear information about their children’s progress through face to face opportunities and with the developing use of Tapestry.
  • Parents are encouraged to support their child’s learning and development at home as this has a significant impact on their child’s learning.
  • We take the time to ‘get to know’ and understand the children and their families enabling us to offer support as needed.
  • We carry out home visits before the children start school in September. This provides the foundation for strong and effective partnerships with parents. The SENCO and Pastoral Lead are also involved with the children’s home visits.
  • Parents/carers are invited into school for a ‘Stay and Play’ session with their child prior to starting school. This provides parents/carers with the opportunity to familiarise themselves with the classroom environment and meet other parents.
  • Parents/carers are invited to attend a Phonics session with their child. This provides parents/carers with the opportunity to see how Phonics is taught in school as well as gathering ideas on how best to support their child at home.
  • Parents/carers are given the opportunity throughout the year to engage in the wider school community.
  • Parents/carers are fully involved in their child’s learning and development through the use of Tapestry.
  • Parent’s are invited into school for parents evenings to provide an update about their child’s learning and progress.
  • Children with SEND or additional needs have in-depth shared conversations to ensure targets and progress are shared.
  • We are flexible in our approach to communicating with parents/carers and adapt our communication methods to suit different preferences.



EYFS Statutory Framework

Characteristics of Effective Learning describe behaviours children use in order to learn. To learn well, children must approach opportunities with curiosity, energy and enthusiasm. Effective learning must be meaningful to a child, so that they are able to use what they have learned and apply it in new situations. These abilities and attitudes of strong learners will support them to learn well and make good progress in all the Areas of Learning and Development.

The three characteristics of effective teaching and learning are:

• Playing and exploring – children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’.

• Active learning – children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements.

• Creating and thinking critically – children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.



Prime areas of development and learning lay vital foundations in the early years.

The three prime areas are: CL, PSED and PD.

The four specific areas are: L, M, UW, EAD which build on the development gained through the prime areas.




When we give every child the best start in their early years, we give them what they need today. We also set them up with every chance of success tomorrow.

Development Matters [DfE, 2021]