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Cottingley Pre-School Nursery

children's development & learning 

The EYFS states that the individuality and uniqueness of each child and what the child can do is the starting point for Early Years education and they highlight the way in which the child’s learning and development occur as a result of interactions between the child, the adults and the environment. 

These areas are now set out in the EYFS as four themes:

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Cottingley Pre-school Nursery

Childrens Development & Learning

Registered Charity No: 1031850

Areas of Development & 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 which help children make progress in each of the areas of learning and development.

The Early Years Foundation Stage learning and development requirements comprise of seven areas of learning and development. The seven areas of learning and development comprise of three prime areas and four specific areas. The prime areas cover the knowledge and skills which are the foundation for children’s readiness and future progress, and which are applied and reinforced by the specific areas.

The three prime areas:

  • Personal, social and emotional development 
  • Physical development
  • Communication and language

The four specific areas:

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

For each area, the practice guidance sets out 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

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 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.

Unique Child 

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


  • Understand and observe each child’s development and learning, assess progress, plan for next steps
  • Support babies and children to develop a positive sense of their own identity and culture.
  • Identify any need for additional support
  • Keep children safe
  • Value and respect all children and families equally.

Learning & Development 

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

Practitioners teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across the prime and specific areas of learning and development.

  • They foster the characteristics of effective early learning
  • Playing and exploring
  • Active learning
  • Creating and thinking critically

Positive Relationships 

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Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.

  • Warm and loving, and foster a sense of belonging
  • Sensitive and responsive to the child’s needs, feelings and interests
  • Supportive of the child’s own efforts and independence
  • Consistent in settling clear boundaries
  • Stimulating
  • Build on key person relationships in early years settings.
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Enabling Environments 

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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 and parents and carers.

  • Value all people
  • Value learning


  • Stimulating resources, relevant to all the children’s cultures and communities
  • Rich learning opportunities through play and playful teaching
  • Support for children to take risks and explore
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