Foundation Stage Curriculum

The Early Years Foundation Stage

At Russell Lower School, we intend that our ambitious and inclusive EYFS curriculum educates all children in knowledge, skills and understanding, to be effective, inquisitive, curious, independent learners. It will influence their wider thinking across all areas of the curriculum as they start out on their educational journey, supporting them to progress from their individual starting points and preparing them for the next stage of their education.


Teaching Aims

Through the seven areas of learning we provide coherently sequenced and planned topics that excite and engage children, building on their own interests and developing their experiences of the world around them.

Prime areas of Learning

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

Specific areas of learning

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

We recognise that all children come into our setting with varied experiences and all staff work hard to ensure that the learning opportunities provided widen their knowledge and understanding of the world, setting ambitious expectations for all children.

It is our intention that children learn through a balance of whole class/group teaching and play based learning.  This is through topics, themes, continuous provision activities and the children’s interests.  Children in EYFS will engage in playful learning experiences and with resources both inside and outside.

The broad and balanced curriculum provides opportunities for adult-led activities, adult initiated activities and child-initiated activities.  We focus on promoting the more general concepts of British values within the curriculum and understand that the children’s development within these areas is key to promoting the values in the long term. We are passionate about creating opportunities for all children to communicate more easily through developing language and communication skills and specifically teaching vocabulary.   


Aspirations for Learners

Our ethos in Early Years is to support children’s personal, social and emotional development so that they feel safe and secure and are ready to learn.  There are opportunities to follow the children’s interests and provide opportunities to support learning, consolidate and deepen knowledge ensuring children meet their next steps.  The curriculum celebrates diversity and supports the pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. Those children with particular needs, including SEND, receive support allowing them to be successful.

By working in partnership with parents and carers, we will encourage independent, happy learners who thrive in school and reach their full potential from their various starting points.  The children will develop the skills and knowledge that will enable them to make a smooth transition into Year 1.  We wish our children to believe in themselves and their abilities and capabilities, to belong to the school learning community and the wider community and to become successful in their academic career and beyond.  We endeavor to give the children the Cultural Capital they need for future success i.e. giving each child the best start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their full potential and achieve future success.


 Characteristics of learning

  • Playing and exploring
  • Active learning
  • Creating and thinking critically


Our Early Years principles are based on EYFS statutory guidance and the four overarching principles of good practice:

  • Every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
  • Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
  • Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between school and home.
  • Children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.
Our Early Years practice is based on on-going observation and assessment of the children and their interests. We use Development Matters in order to monitor the progress children are making towards achieving the Early Learning Goals at the end of the Foundation Stage.
Click below to see the Foundation Stage subject curriculum map.
For details on reading please see here
For details on writing please see here
For details on maths please see here
Click below to see the Foundation Stage theme webs.
Click below to see our learning logs.