How we support each child’s learning and development

Every child is unique but we believe that development in all children is dependent upon how they engage with other people and their environment. We want to make sure that every child develops to their full potential and┬áthink that this is best done through play and by linking learning to each child’s own interests. At Peasmarsh Flying Start Pre-School, we observe children continuously and use this information to plan the action we can take to help each child develop. You can read more about our Observe, Assess, Plan cycle by clicking each heading on the right. Our observations are based on the Early Years Foundation Stage framework (please click here for more information) and are recorded in each child’s Learning Journey. We use iConnect software on iPads to help us capture these observations. Each child’s Learning Journey folder contains examples of their work and achievements, along with our observations, photos, and notes of conversations with the child, and examples provided by parents from times away from Pre-School. These are matched to each part of the EYFS framework. The aim is to build a unique picture of the child’s progress, and particular interests and learning style. We encourage parents to come in and talk about their child’s Learning Journey with their key worker whenever they want to.

We plan activities for each child, based on three characteristics of effective learning: playing and exploring; active learning; and creating and thinking critically. You can find out more about each below.

Ongoing assessment to tailor support

We observe the children as they act and interact in their play, everyday activities and planned activities. We also try to involve parents so we can learn about what the child does at home. We use the Learning Journey to describe this, recording our observations.
We analyse our observations and use this information to assess each individual’s development against all the elements of the Early Years Foundation Stage.
As a group, we agree how we can support each child to strengthen and deepen their current learning and development. The result is a plan tailored to each individual child’s needs.

Playing and exploring

12th March 2014 043

Finding out and exploring. Showing curiousity about objects, events and people and developing particular interests.

Playing with what they know. Pretending objects are things from their experience, representing experiences and roles in play, and acting out experiences with other people.

Being willing to ‘have a go’. Initiating activities and taking a risk, engaging in new experiences and learning by trial and error.

Active learning

12th june 2014 048

Being involved and concentrating. Maintaining focus on their activity for a period of time. Showing high levels of energy and fascination. not being easily distracted and paying attention to details.

Keep on trying. Persisting with an activity when challenges occur and showing a belief that more effort or a different approach will help.

Enjoying achieving what they set out to do. Showing satisfaction in meeting their own goals and being proud in how they accomplished something, not just in the end result. Enjoying meeting challenges for their own sake rather than for external rewards or praise.

Creating and thinking critically

12th june 2014 010

Having their own ideas. Thinking of ideas. Finding ways to solve problems or new ways of doing things.

Making links. Making links and noticing patterns in their experience. Making predictions. Testing their ideas. Developing ideas of grouping, sequences, cause and effect.

Choosing ways to do things. Planning, making decisions about how to approach a task, solve a problem and reach a goal. Checking how well their activities are going and changing strategy as needed. Reviewing how well the approach worked.

Material for the above page taken from “Development Matters in Early Years Foundation Stage, Crown Copyright 2012.