Clifton Primary School

Aspire to Achieve

Early Years Foundation Stage

Children learning in Nursery and Reception classes follow the statutory EYFS framework for teaching and development.  This stage is very important in a child’s life as it helps prepare for school ‘readiness’ as well as preparing them for their future learning and successes. 


Children learn skills, acquire new knowledge and demonstrate their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development, these are split into Prime and Specific areas.


Children start developing in the 3 prime areas first. These are:

  • Communication and language;
  • Physical development; and
  • Personal, social and emotional development.

These prime areas are those most essential for a child’s healthy development and future learning, these weave through our Early Years Curriculum


As children grow, the prime areas will help them to develop skills in 4 specific areas. These are:

  • Literacy;
  • Mathematics;
  • Understanding the world; and
  • Expressive arts and design.

All 7 areas of learning are used to plan children’s learning and activities. We make sure that the activities are suited to your child’s unique needs by being flexible where staff follow your child's unique needs and interests, while teaching them the most important skills and knowledge to prepare them for future learning.

Phonics teaching is  a key part of  children’s learning, this is where children learn to link letters and sounds and develop early reading and writing skills.  For more information see our English page. We use a systematic synthetic phonics programme called Read Write Inc.


Assessment at the end of Reception

Assessment plays an important part in helping parents, carers, teachers and other adults to recognise children’s progress, understand their needs, and to plan activities and support. Ongoing assessment is an important part of what we do. We continually make observations about each child's learning and development  and use these observations  to identify learning priorities and plan relevant learning experiences for each child.


The EYFS curriculum consists of 17 goals for learning or 'Early Learning Goals', we use these to make final assessments on your child's learning and development at the end of the Reception Year.


Teachers indicate whether children are meeting expected levels of development:

  • Emerging - not yet reaching expected levels of development for age
  • Expected - reached expected levels of development for age 


These judgements are shared with parents in the annual report and Year 1 teachers during transition meetings between Reception and Year 1 teachers. They are used to assist with the planning of learning at the start of Year 1.