The Early Years Foundation Stage

The Early Years Foundation Stage
The Nursery and Reception classes come under a heading called “The Early Years Foundation Stage”. This means that there are strong links between the Reception class and Nursery and should enable the move from Nursery into Reception to be as smooth and problem-free as possible. Children currently attending the Nursery have opportunities to visit the main school for P.E, special assemblies and to work with the children in Reception.

The Nursery and Reception Classes follow the EYFS Statutory guidance and assess the children against the ‘ages and stages’.  They teach the following seven areas of learning:

Prime Areas:

  • Communication and Language
  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Physical Development

Specific Areas:

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Expressive Arts and Design
  • Understanding the World

A number of topics are covered in the Foundation Stage, most of which stem from the children’s own interests.  We send a Newsletter home to parents weekly to keep them up to date with what the children are learning.

Herts Quality Standard

All of the Foundation stage staff have worked hard to achieve the Herts Quality Standard! This Quality mark took eighteen months to achieve and a number of set modules had to be completed. Parents were asked for their input throughout the course and moderators assessed each setting separately in Pre-school, Nursery and Reception.

We are very proud to have achieved this mark of Quality.



The Nursery children are taught by Miss Cross, Mrs Chinn, Miss Irving, Mrs Woodland-Payne. Mrs Tovee and Mrs Arnold.  They work in our newly built nursery building where we have morning and afternoon sessions.  There is a large outdoor area offering opportunities for learning in all areas as well as lots of physical activity.

We are extremely lucky to have our own Forest School on site and to have Miss Irving as a qualified Forest School Leader.  The children will have the chance to experience a range of different outdoor activities in a forest setting, starting during their time at Nursery but continuing throughout their time at Aycliffe Drive.

During the term the Nursery staff aim to continue links between home and school with the use of Knuffle Bunny. Each child has the opportunity to take their class rabbit home and to write or draw in a diary of their shared time together. Flopsy and Cottontail’s news will be shared with the class on her return.

The pupils will be developing their mathematical understanding through counting and sorting activities, number rhymes and stories. They will practice number recognition and ordering.

All children will have daily phonics teaching to encourage listening skills followed by recognising the letters of the alphabet and the sounds that they make.


The Reception children are working in their own unit. They have an outdoor classroom, which they use to extend the children’s learning.  They have an area where they will be able to dig, to plant, and to watch their plants grow. There is a bench which runs along the edge of the grass and they have a large sandpit. Each of the areas of learning are reflected in the outdoor area and the children have free flow between the indoors and outdoors. There are steps and stepping stones which take them to the school field. All the children enjoy having their own special part of the school.

Mrs. Long and Mrs. Norton are the Reception class teachers and Mrs Patterson, Miss Trinnaman and Mrs. Barry and Mrs Burton also work in the Reception Class.  The children will of course be learning to read and write with the help of their sentence makers, and daily phonics sessions.

Their mathematical experience will include counting to 20 and beyond, calculations, the naming of 2D and 3D shapes and the use of mathematical language such as more, less, longer and shorter.