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Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

At Our Lady of Compassion, we follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) framework, which is formed from our Nursery and Reception classes.


Our highly trained and experienced staff team work to ensure that children’s early years’ experiences are happy, active and safe, and ensure that all children leave the EYFS well prepared for the next stage in their learning journey. We firmly believe in the value of learning through play and are passionate about following children’s interests. Children become independent and competent learners through a balance of child initiated and adult led experiences, both indoors and outdoors.


Our Vision and Values







At Our Lady of Compassion, children are offered the very best start to their education through rich opportunities and experiences. We adopt a child-centred approach where children learn through play, meeting individual needs, interests and fascinations often through ‘planning in the moment.’

  • Provide developmentally appropriate high-quality care and education so that all children can achieve

  • Develop strong and secure relationships where children feel valued as an individual  

  • Create nurturing, stimulating indoor and outdoor learning environments that act as a child’s ‘third educator’  

  • Foster respect for one another and the world around us

  • Develop a family friendly ethos where school and families work together to support each child’s learning journey

  • Nurture self-belief and self-confidence in children to become independent learners who are willing to take risks

  • Celebrate the achievements and uniqueness of every child

  • Encourage curiosity and creativity to instil a ‘have a try’ attitude



At this school we aim to provide a broad and balanced range of activities which will enable each child to develop emotionally, socially, physically, creatively, and intellectually to their full potential and at their own pace. Each child is unique and is valued as an individual. We are aware that children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates.



Children in EYFS learn skills, acquire new knowledge and demonstrate their understanding through 7 areas of learning and development. These are organised into two areas: prime and specific.


The 3 prime areas are:

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development – fostering confidence, independence, and social skills with peers and adults 

  • Communication, Language and Literacy - developing children’s listening an attention, understanding, and speaking skills

  • Physical Development – developing gross and fine motor skills and helping children to become confident early writers


These prime areas will support a child to develop skills in the 4 specific areas. The specific areas are:

  • Literacy – reading and writing. In Nursery, children develop a deep understanding of phase 1 phonics through exploring sounds around them, rhythm, rhyme, alliteration, and oral segmenting and blending. Once a child joins Reception they will receive a daily phonics lessons, following the Read Write Inc programme, to learn how to read and write simple sentences before the end of the year.

  • Mathematics – developing understanding of number, numerical patterns, shape space and measure through hands-on, practical activities.

  • Understanding the World - helping children to make sense of the world around them through learning about people and communities and the natural world.

  • Expressive Art and Design – developing a child’s imagination and creativity art, songs, stories, role play, and music.


Please see the Nursery and Reception pages for curriculum maps for each year group.







Outdoor Learning


The EYFS recognises the importance of outdoor learning and the EYFS framework states that young children must have access to outdoor spaces. At Our Lady of Compassion, we are passionate about providing outdoor learning opportunities as research children who spend time outdoors are more likely to be:

  • Happy

  • Healthy

  • Creative

  • Resilient

  • Collaborative

  • Problem-solving

  • Physically skilled (strength, balance, co-ordination)

  • Risk-taking

  • Adaptable

  • Calm

  • Independent

  • Connected to nature


As well as free-flow opportunities between the indoor and outdoor learning environments, at Our Lady of Compassion we also weekly offer Forest School sessions within our school grounds delivered by a fully qualified Level 3 Forest School leader.


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