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Thornton Dale C of E Primary School

Proud to be part Elevate MAT

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01751 474 345

Castle Close, Thornton Dale, Pickering. YO18 7TW

Mrs Nikkie Beniams

Be Kind, be brave, believe



Our intent for EYFS is to inspire, engage and enthuse our children to be active learners every day, not just in EYFS but throughout their whole school journey. Children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning is ignited through exciting, open-ended provision areas both inside and outdoors, alongside nurturing and high quality adult interactions, which ensure that children develop the skills needed to learn, form positive relationships and thrive. 

Child-led learning is at the heart of our approach and we develop a curriculum for EYFS that ensures children develop their vocabulary and language, alongside deep acquisition of knowledge through play-based learning and excellent modelling from all adults. Our environments and provision are strongly immersed in stories and literature to facilitate imagination and wonder.   

Ensuring thoughtfully planned, smooth and nurturing transitions for all children is a key part of our intent for Early Years. We value our relationships with parents and carers, as the people who know their child best, to secure a smooth transition for our children.  Our learning is well-sequenced to ensure that all children have the knowledge and experience necessary to help them succeed, no matter which stage of their learning they are at.  


Our EYFS establishes firm foundations on which to build future academic, enterprising, social and emotional successes focusing particularly on wellbeing and positive attitudes to learning.  


Whilst recognising that every child is unique, we have the highest expectations that our children in EYFS will:  

·         -develop the confidence to be resilient and believe in themselves as learners 

·         -be willing to take risks in their learning and consistently try hard 

·         -be positive and about their learning  

·         -be able to self-regulate and manage their feelings 

·         -be effective and competent communicators  

·         -be creative and critical thinkers 

·         -be thoughtful and kind, developing a good understanding of people and how to take care of the world around them 

·         -have the highest expectations of themselves and of others  



Our approach is implemented through following the children’s interests on a daily basis through our play-based curriculum.  

We facilitate a highly stimulating indoor and outdoor environment, which encompasses open ended, natural resources which ignite children’s curiosity and imagination. Children have access to the outdoors at all times, so that they can learn in an environment that compliments their learning style the best and allows them to make excellent progress. Whilst outdoors, children can also appreciate their local environment, understand life cycles, show empathy for living things and develop their observational skills. Literacy and Maths are threaded through all areas of the environment. 


Our highly effective practitioners work alongside the children in the environment to encourage, support, model, question, prompt and explain. Each practitioner is aware of children’s learning journey and their next steps. Their excellent knowledge of the Early Years Curriculum allows them to support children’s progress in the environment during play, motivating each child to have ownership of their learning.   


Our unique learning approach values the importance of acquisition of key skills, facilitated through short, fun and interactive daily Phonics and Maths inputs. Our exciting environment is then enhanced to support the application of key learning, so that children are constantly remembering and embedding what they have learnt and applying their skills within context. In addition, high quality texts are available in every area of provision. These texts can be used to support and extend children’s storytelling in play, to encourage children to use their phonic knowledge to extend their understanding on specific areas of learning and to also develop a love of reading. 


Our curriculum for EYFS is underpinned by excellent relationships with children, but also with our parents. We ensure that children have the best possible opportunities to achieve by communicating openly and effectively with parents on a regular basis, through weekly newsletters, Tapestry, termly reports and verbal communication. 

The impact of our Early Years approach is that when children leave Reception, they are: 


  • Happy, resilient, capable, confident and self-assured individuals 
  • Strong, inquisitive and independent learners who thrive in all areas of learning and development 
  • Capable of developing and sustaining positive relationships within their school community and beyond.
  • Able to achieve excellence.