Foundation Stage Curriculum

The three prime areas, Personal, Social and Emotional Development (PSED), Communication and Language (CL), and Physical Development (PD), describe universal core aspects of early child development.  

Communication and language

The development of children’s spoken language underpins all seven areas of learning and development. Children’s back-and-forth interactions from an early age form the foundations for language and cognitive development. The number and quality of the conversations they have with adults and peers throughout the day in a language-rich environment is crucial. By commenting on what children are interested in or doing, and echoing back what they say with new vocabulary added, practitioners will build children's language effectively. Reading frequently to children, and engaging them actively in stories, non-fiction, rhymes and poems, and then providing them with extensive opportunities to use and embed new words in a range of contexts, will give children the opportunity to thrive. Through conversation, story-telling and role play, where children share their ideas with support and modelling from their teacher, and sensitive questioning that invites them to elaborate, children become comfortable using a rich range of vocabulary and language structures.  

Children have lots of opportunities to talk and practitioners are available to listen to children, model speaking in full sentences and extend their vocabulary. During whole class teaching, we use turn to your partner when asking questions. This gives every child the chance to think, talk and listen to each other to process their answers. Practitioners are then able to use this time to listen, paraphrase and extend children’s ideas.

Every child has a speech and language assessment to see if they need any speech and language interventions. Interventions are carried out 1-1 or in small groups. 

F1 Communication, Language, Vocabulary and Reading LTP

F2 Communication, Language, Vocabulary and Reading LTP


Personal, social and emotional development

Every child is allocated a key worker who will work closely with their key children to ensure that every child, and their family, feel welcomed, supported and happy in our setting. To ensure that our environment is predictable, we have the same areas, resources, and routines to make self-regulation physically and emotionally manageable.

Children are taught to wash their hands, use the toilet and dress themselves for outdoor play. We scaffold the children’s learning to meet the individual needs of all children.

Oral health

Oral health has been added to the statutory framework for the early years 2021 because good oral health habits need to be formed from an early age.

We run oral health lessons each term. The children are taught how to brush them properly, how much toothpaste to use, and how else they can look after their teeth, including going to the dentist and eating/drinking less sugary foods/drinks. Children are given a free toothbrush and toothpaste each term. Children are only offered milk or water at school.

Physical Development 

PE is about improving the skills of coordination, control, manipulation and movement.  In our school we believe effective physical development helps children to gain confidence in what they can do, feel the benefits of being healthy and active and have a positive sense of wellbeing. Children have the opportunity to access planned activities that offer appropriate physical challenges through continuous outdoor provision and through timetabled gymnastics, dance and outdoor games lessons.  We also encourage the development of fine and gross motor skills through the provision of suitable resources, for example riding bikes and using scissors, throughout the day.  This includes opportunities for children with physical disability or motor impairment to develop their physical skills


Specific areas of learning

The Specific areas of learning are, Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the world, and Expressive arts and design. The Specific areas represent crucial shared cultural tools and knowledge, which babies and children engage in as members of the society in which they live. Specific areas of learning and development provide children with knowledge and skills to flourish in society.



At Pye Bank School, we consider reading to be an essential skill that will be a huge factor in ensuring success later in life. We teach a high quality, daily, discrete session using Rocket Phonics synthetic sound programme. The children are assessed daily and tracked half termly. Once children are secure on the first 6 sounds they start to take home phonetically decodable books tailored to their phonics level. The books are closely matched to the children's increasing knowledge of phonics so they experience early reading success and gain confidence that they are readers.

A Reading Rich Curriculum 

We are passionate about books and aim to inspire lifelong readers. In EYFS, we choose texts which are rich in exposure to tier 2 vocabulary, including texts which promote the use of rhythm, repetition and sometimes rhyme, and which inspire children’s imagination. We know that repeated exposure to these core texts allow children to practice developing language skills as they retell and engage with them in whole class lessons where adults read them and make characters and settings come alive, through to engagement in the stories through play in provision. We believe that deepening learning takes place when children return to these high-quality texts, so plan to introduce them in nursery and then revisit them in FS2 in a deeper way, strengthening comprehension. Children develop language and comprehension skills as they learn to recite these stories from memory. We combine ‘golden and old’ and ‘new and bold’ stories so that they are exposed to a wide range of texts and choose stories that we believe are worth reading and re-reading.  

When we read the stories, we help children to get to know the story very well: the characters, settings, plot. We also identify several vocabulary words from the stories that children would not ordinarily be exposed to (tier 2 vocabulary words), such as stumble, squelch, tiptoe, swirling in ‘We’re going on a Bear Hunt’, for example. We talk about these words with children and use them frequently in provision, so that they practice using them in speech. Children’s understanding of these words is then developed in the context of their own everyday lives. 



We teach spelling through our phonics lesson (Rocket Phonics) and letter formation through handwriting (Letter join).  Children work through the programme and the tricky words are planned according to the programme (see Phonics Long Term Plan for details).  

There are mark-making opportunities linked to topic outlined on the Provision planner. These span across a range of areas within the unit. There is also a mark making area as part of continuous provision. 

For more information please see the document below:





There is a strong focus on counting and understanding of numbers to ten. Our continuous provision areas are carefully planned to give children frequent and varied opportunities to build and apply this understanding whilst enjoying themselves. Children also have rich opportunities to explore shape, space and measure and develop their reasoning skills. Our skilled staff interact effectively with the children to encourage them to look for patterns, spot connections and talk about what they notice. This strong grounding in number gives children the necessary building blocks to excel in maths as they move into Key Stage 1 and beyond.

At Pye Bank Primary, pupils are taught through whole class interactive teaching, where the focus is on all pupils working together, on the same lesson content, at the same time. This ensures that all children can master concepts before moving to the next part of the curriculum sequence, allowing no pupil to be left behind. We strongly believe that our curriculum should reflect the mastery approach, researched and developed with the support of the NCETM Mastery Hub. Mastery is an approach to mathematics that incorporates 5 main ideas: variation, representation and structure, fluency, mathematical thinking and coherence.