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Early Years Foundation Stage

Nursery & Reception

Children learning in Nursery and Reception classes are known as the Early Years.  We follow the national Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) framework.  


In the Early Years at St Mary's Catholic Primary School our children are happy.  They are excited and motivated to learn through rich and challenging learning experiences; opportunities to explore and take risks, and first-hand experiences. We have high ambitions for all our children and recognise that children have different starting points to their learning. We plan according to children’s stage of development so all can thrive and develop. We aim for children to be well-rounded individuals who are independent, resilient, and confident in themselves and with others.


Our partnership with parents means that parents have the opportunity to work closely with our Early Years practitioners to support children’s transition into the setting. We would like parents to feel secure in the knowledge that their child is well cared for and happy at school. Our parents are welcome to be actively involved in their children’s learning in school and are able to share learning experiences through ‘stay and play’ sessions, home visits, online learning journeys, volunteering and parent workshops. We recognise that parents are the first educators in children’s lives and value contributions to judgements about children’s development. We use this information to support our assessments and share information about what children need to do next to develop and thrive.


Maths is taught through the 'Power Maths' scheme. Power Maths  is a mastery approach designed to spark curiosity and excitement and nurture confidence in maths. Built around a child‑centred lesson design that models and embeds a growth mindset approach to maths and focuses on helping all children to build a deep understanding of maths concepts. Click the link below to find out more.

Reading, Writing and Phonics is taught through our Read Write Inc program. 

At St Mary’s we are developing and improving the way we teach phonics. We are using the ‘Read, Write Inc.’ phonics program which has proven success in developing children’s reading ability. The program is different to the way we have taught phonics before and some sounds are taught in a different order.


All of our staff are trained in this new way of working and we will be working closely with parents to help you support your child at home. Children will also have two ‘Read, Write, Inc’ reading books over 3 or 5 days depending on what stage of the program they are working on.

Children are encouraged to read every night at home to develop fluency and intonation as well as understanding.

Please visit the Read Write Inc page for more information.


The EYFS framework explains how and what children will be learning to support their healthy development and provide the foundation children need to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up.


The EYFS specifies requirements for learning and development and for safeguarding 

children and promoting their welfare. 


Children will learn skills, acquire new knowledge and demonstrate their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development.


Prime Areas:

Personal, Social & Emotional Development


Managing Self

Building Relationships

Communication & Language

Listening, Attention & Understanding


Physical Development

Gross Motor Skills

Fine motor Skills

Specific Areas:



Word Reading




Numerical Patterns

Understanding the World

Past & Present

People, Culture & Communities

The Natural World

Expressive Arts & Design

Creating with Materials

Being Imaginative & Expressive


Please click on the links below to find out more. 


Early Years Foundation Stage Framework