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Children start to learn about the world around them from the moment they are born. The care and education offered at Fountains Playgroup & Pre-School helps children to continue to do this by providing interesting activities that are appropriate for their age and stage of development.


Areas of development & learning

Prime areas

  • Personal, social and emotional development.

  • Physical development.

  • Communication and language.

Specific areas

  • Literacy.

  • Mathematics.

  • Understanding the world.

  • Expressive arts and design.


For each area, the level of progress that children are expected to have attained by the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage is defined by the Early Learning Goals. These goals state what it is expected that children will know, and be able to do, by the end of the reception year of their education.

Development Matters doc (DfE 2021)  sets out the likely stages of progress a child makes along their learning journey. 

Our planning programme supports children to develop the knowledge, skills and understanding they need for:

Personal, social and emotional development: making relationships, self-confidence and self-awareness, and managing feelings and behaviour.

Physical development: moving and handling and health and self-care.

Communication and language: listening and attention, understanding and speaking.

Literacy: reading and writing.

Mathematics: numbers and shape, space and measure.

Understanding the world: people and communities, the world and technology.

Expressive arts and design: exploring and using media / materials and being imaginative.


Our learning and development approach and assessment

Learning through play

Being active and playing supports young children’s learning and development through doing and talking. This is how children learn to think about and understand the world around them. We use the EYFS statutory guidance on education programmes to plan and provide opportunities which will help children to make progress in all areas of learning. This programme is made up of a mixture of activities that children plan and organise for themselves and activities planned and led by practitioners.


Promoting effective learning

We understand that all children engage with other people and their environment through the characteristics of effective learning. These are described in the Early Years Foundation Stage as:

  • playing and exploring.

  • engagement.

  • active learning.

  • motivation.

  • creating and thinking.

  • critical thinking.

We aim to provide effective learning by observing how a child is learning and then being clear about what we can do/provide to support that child.


We assess how young children are learning and developing by observing them and chatting to their parents.

We use information that we gain from observations to support our learning plans. We believe that parents know their children best and we will ask parents to contribute to assessment by sharing information about likes , strengths, difficulties and needs to support their development.

We, as a staff team, discuss the children and their learning; to ensure no learning needs have been missed.  We undertake observations to inform the parents of what their child has been doing and assessment summaries during transition as they are settling in.

The progress check at age two

The Early Years Foundation Stage requirements are that we supply parents and carers with a short written summary of their child’s development in the prime areas of 

  • learning and development

  • personal, social and emotional development

  • physical development

  • communication and language

Child age between 24 - 36 months.

Your child’s key person is responsible for completing the checks using information from on-going observational assessments carried out as part of our everyday practice, taking account of the views and contributions of parents and other professionals. The parents will be invited into playgroup to chat about their child and their stage of development. 

Records of achievement

We keep a record of achievement for each child. Your child's record of achievement helps us to celebrate together her/his achievements and to work together to provide what your child needs for her/his well-being and to make progress.

Your child’s key person will work in partnership with you to keep this record. To do this, you and she will collect information about your child's needs, activities, interests and achievements. This information will enable the key person to identify your child's stage of progress. Together, we will then decide on how to help your child to move on to the next stage.

Working together for your children

We maintain the ratio of adults to children in the setting that is set by the Safeguarding and Welfare Requirements. We may also have volunteer parent helpers at times, to complement these ratios. This helps us to:

  • Give time and attention to each child.

  • Talk with the children about their interests and activities.

  • Help children to experience and benefit from the activities we provide.

  • Allow the children to explore and be adventurous in safety.

We teach the children to be aware of our British Values, namely;

  • Mutual Respect and Tolerance: respecting each other, good manners.

  • Democracy: We give children choices and value their opinion.

  • Rule of Law: We are consistent in our rules and the children are aware the rules are there for a purpose.

  • Individual Liberty: We aim to develop the children's self esteem and self worth as we give them lots of praise and share their work.

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