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St Mary's Catholic Primary School

Growing Together in the Friendship of Faith

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Early Years

Early Years at St Mary's

Welcome to Class 1 (EYFS – Reception)

In Class 1 our aim is to give the best possible start to all children at the beginning of their journey through education by encouraging independence, creativity and developing the emotional well-being of each child.


Following a thorough baseline assessment at the start of the year, in which we find out what each child knows in order to give them an accurate starting point, we give the children engaging and hands-on experiences planned around topics they are interested in to nurture their love of learning in a caring and supportive environment where they can become confident learners.  We know that children learn best when they are having fun, so play and active involvement underpin the structure of every day.  


Children in Early Years learn at different rates, so each child is planned for as an individual in order to maximise their learning.  There are daily opportunities for activities to support all areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and a mix of adult led and child led tasks.  


The Foundation Stage Curriculum covers seven areas of learning:

Prime Areas ~ These are usually developed first and are essential for future learning:

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

 Specific Areas ~ As children grow the prime areas help them to develop skills in:

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


See links for further information :

Development Matters

Early Years Foundation Stage

Early Years Framework



In Class 1 all of our children have a 'Learning Journal' which celebrates each child's journey through the Foundation Stage as well as books to show our children’s development in literacy and maths. Floor books are also used to show learning in other areas of the curriculum too (e.g RE / Experiences / Forest Schools). Parents and Carers are encouraged to contribute towards their child's journal by watching out for new things at home. 'WOW' sheets are sent home regularly and they are also available from Class 1 to pick up at any time. Stay and Play sessions and Workshops also allow for Parents and Carers to contribute to their child’s learning and development.


A very important part of our day is the time we spend learning about phonics.  Our school follows the Letters and Sounds phonics programme, where all children are taught how to recognise letters and read words.  More information about Letters and Sounds programme can be found below.


Letters and Sounds Programme.


At the end of the year the children will be assessed on whether they have met the Early Learning Goals for the Early Years Foundation Stage. 


     Communication and Language

ELG 01 - Listening and Attention

Children listen attentively in a range of situations. They listen to stories, accurately anticipating key events, and respond to what they hear with relevant comments, questions or actions. They give their attention to what others say and respond appropriately, while engaged in another activity.

ELG 02 - Understanding

Children follow instructions involving several ideas or actions. They answer ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions about their experiences and in response to stories or events.

ELG 03 - Speaking

Children express themselves effectively, showing awareness of listeners’ needs. They use past, present and future forms accurately when talking about events that have happened or are to happen in the future. They develop their own narratives and explanations by connecting ideas or events.


Physical Development 

ELG 04 - Moving and Handling

Children show good control and coordination in large and small movements. They move confidently in a range of ways, safely negotiating space. They handle equipment and tools effectively, including pencils for writing.

ELG 05 - Health and Self-Care

Children know the importance for good health of physical exercise and a healthy diet, and talk about ways to keep healthy and safe. They manage their own basic hygiene and personal needs successfully, including dressing and going to the toilet independently.


     Personal, Social and Emotional Development

ELG 06 - Self-Confidence and Self-Awareness

Children are confident to try new activities, and to say why they like some activities more

than others. They are confident to speak in a familiar group, will talk about their ideas, and will choose the resources they need for their chosen activities. They say when they do or don’t need help.

ELG 07 - Managing Feelings and Behaviour

Children talk about how they and others show feelings, talk about their own and others’ behaviour, and its consequences, and know that some behaviour is unacceptable. They work as part of a group or class, and understand and follow rules. They adjust their behaviour to different situations, and take changes of routine in their stride.

ELG 08 - Making Relationships

Children play cooperatively, taking turns with others. They take account of one another’s ideas about how to organise their activity. They show sensitivity to others’ needs and feelings, and form positive relationships with adults and other children.



ELG 09 - Reading

Children read and understand simple sentences. They use phonic knowledge to decode regular words and read them aloud accurately. They also read some common irregular words. They demonstrate an understanding when talking with others about what they have read.

ELG 10 - Writing

Children use their phonic knowledge to write words in ways which match their spoken sounds. They also write some irregular common words. They write sentences which can be read by themselves and others. Some words are spelt correctly and others are phonetically plausible.



ELG 11 - Numbers

Children count reliably with numbers from one to 20, place them in order and say which number is one more or one less than a given number. Using quantities and objects, they add and subtract two single-digit numbers and count on or back to find the answer. They solve problems, including doubling, halving and sharing.

ELG 12 - Shape, Space and Measures

Children use everyday language to talk about size, weight, capacity, position, distance, time and money to compare quantities and objects and to solve problems. They recognise, create and describe patterns. They explore characteristics of everyday objects and shapes and use mathematical language to describe them.


Understanding of the World

ELG 13 - People and Communities

Children talk about past and present events in their own lives and in the lives of family members. They know that other children don’t always enjoy the same things, and are sensitive to this. They know about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and among families, communities and traditions.

ELG 14 - The World

Children know about similarities and differences in relation to places, objects, materials and living things. They talk about the features of their own immediate environment and how environments might vary from one to another. They make observations of animals and plants and explain why some things occur, and talk about changes.

ELG 15 - Technology

Children recognise that a range of technology is used in places such as homes and schools.

They select and use technology for particular purposes.


Expressive Arts and Design

ELG 16 - Exploring and Using Media and Materials

Children sing songs, make music and dance, and experiment with ways of changing them. They safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function

ELG 17 - Being Imaginative

Children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking

about uses and purposes. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through

design and technology, art, music, dance, role play and stories.


For more information on this, please click on the link below.