Children start to learn about the world around them from the moment they are born. The Care and Education offered by the staff at Great Holm Pre-School help children to continue to do this by offering stimulating activities that aid children to extend their own learning and follow their own interests.

From September 2021 the government implemented a new framework that all childcare providers will use in their settings. The document is called the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS ).

Whilst children attend out setting our aim is to encourage independence, to ensure they are ready for the next steps of development when they go to school. Children strive learning through play - we follow their interests week by week, allowing them to access different resources to develop their learning.

We aim to ensure that each child

  • is in a safe and stimulating environment;

  • is given generous care and attention, because of our ratio of qualified staff to children, as well as volunteer parent helpers;

  • has the chance to join with other children and adults to live, play, work and learn together;

  • is helped to take forward her/his learning and development by being helped to build on what she/he already knows and can do;

  • has a personal key person who makes sure each child makes satisfying progress;

  • is in a setting that sees parents as partners in helping each child to learn and develop; and

  • is in a setting in which parents help to shape the service it offers.

Children's development and learning

The provision for children's development and learning is guided by The Early Years Foundation Stage (DfE 2012). Our provision reflects the four guiding themes and principles of the Early Years Foundation Stage.

A Unique Child

Every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self assured.

Enabling Environments

Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners, parents and carers.

Positive Relationships

Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships. This is something we focus on.

Learning & Development

Children develop and learn in different ways. the framework covers the education and care of al children in early years provision including children with special educational needs and disabilities.

How we provide for development and learning

Children start to learn about the world around them from the moment they are born. The care and education offered by our setting helps children to continue to do this by providing all of the children with interesting activities that are appropriate for their age and stage of development.

The Areas of Development and Learning comprise:

Prime Areas

  • personal, social and emotional


  • physical development

  • communication and


Specific Areas

  • literacy

  • mathematics

  • understanding the


  • expressive arts and


For each area, the level of progress children should be 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.

The ‘Development Matters’ guidance sets out the likely stages of progress a child makes along their learning journey towards the early learning goals. Our setting has regard to these matters when we assess children and plan for their learning.

Personal, Social & Emotional Development

  • Self-regulation

  • Managing self

  • Building relationships


& Language

  • Listening, attention and understanding

  • Speaking



  • Gross motor skills

  • Fine motor skills


the World

  • Past and present

  • People and the communities

  • The natural world


  • Number

  • Numerical pattern


  • Comprehension

  • Word reading

  • Writing

Expressive Arts

  • Creating with materials

  • Being imaginative and expressive

Teach through play

  • We love teach through play strategies

Learning through play

Play helps young children to learn and develop through doing and talking, which research has shown to be the means by which young children learn to think. Our setting uses the Early Years Foundation Stage ‘Development Matters guidance to plan and provide a range of play activities which help children to make progress in each of the areas of learning and development. In some of these activities children decide how they will use the activity and, in others, an adult takes the lead in helping the children to take part in the activity. In all activities information from the Development Matters guidance to the Early Years Foundation Stage has been used to decide what equipment to provide and how to provide it.

Characteristics of effective learning

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

1. playing and exploring - engagement

2. active learning - motivation

3. creating and thinking critically - thinking

We aim to provide for the characteristics of effective learning by observing how a child is learning and being clear about what we can do and provide in order to support each child to remain an effective and motivated learner.


The Progress Check at Age Two

We assess how young children are learning and developing by observing them frequently. We use information that we gain from observations, as well as from photographs or videos of the children, to document their progress and where this may be leading them. We believe that parents know their children best and we ask them to contribute to assessment by sharing information about what their children like to do at home and how they as parents are supporting development.

We make periodic assessment summaries of children’s achievement based on our ongoing development records. These form part of children’s records of achievement. We undertake these assessment summaries at regular intervals as well as times of transition, such as when a child moves into a different group or when they go on to school.

Records of Achievement

We keep records of achievement for each child. Staff and parents working together on their children's records of achievement is a key partnership for progress. 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 progress. Your child's key person will work with you to keep this record. To do this you and she/he 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.

Working Together for Your Children

In our setting we maintain the ratio of adults to children in the setting that is set through the Safeguarding and Welfare Requirements. We also have volunteer parent helpers where possible 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