Staples Road Primary School

Strive, Respect, Succeed

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Early Years Foundation Stage and Phonics

"Children in Reception learn the knowledge, routines and behaviours that enable them to be successful in school. They develop their language, communicate well with adults and with their peers and gain a good understanding of numbers and mathematical concepts through thoughtfully planned activities." Ofsted Nov 2022

At Staples Road we believe that children need to start their school journey in a safe, nurturing environment where they can develop their awe and wonder of the world. We aim to provide a stimulating, child-centred place of learning that promotes an independent, confident and happy child with a passion for learning.

The Early Years Foundation Stage [EYFS] at Staples Road seeks to provide:

  • quality and consistency in all early years settings, so that every child makes good progress and no child gets left behind
  • a secure foundation through planning for the learning and development of each individual child, and assessing and reviewing what they have learned regularly
  • partnership working between practitioners and with parents and/or carers
  • equality of opportunity and anti-discriminatory practice, ensuring that every child is included and supported


Four guiding principles shape our practice. These are:


  • every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured
  • children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships
  • children learn and develop well in enabling environments with teaching and support from adults, who respond to their individual interests and needs and help them to build their learning over time. Children benefit from a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and/or carers.
  • importance of learning and development. Children develop and learn at different rates. The framework covers the education and care of all children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).


The EYFS Profile summarises and describes children’s attainment at the end of the EYFS. It is based on ongoing observation and assessment in the three prime and four specific areas of learning, set out below:


The prime areas of learning:

  • communication and language
  • physical development
  • personal, social and emotional development


The specific areas of learning:

  • literacy
  • mathematics
  • understanding the world
  • expressive arts and design


Children are defined as having reached a good level of development (GLD) at the end of the EYFS if they have achieved at least the expected level in:

  • The early learning goals in the prime areas of learning 
  • The early learning goals in the specific areas of mathematics and literacy.




Staples Road Primary School uses a consistent phonics approach across EYFS and KS1 classes: Essential Letters and Sounds (ELS).


ELS is a Systematic Synthetic Phonics (SSP) programme, validated by the Department for Education.


By distilling Letters and Sounds to its purest form, – its essence – every phonics lesson is taught to the highest standard. Essential Letters and Sounds is an SSP where only the essential elements are included.

The name reflects the key principles of the programme; simplicity and consistency.

Phonics Progression

Phonics Presentation for Parents and Carers

Our values are kindness, honesty, creativity and resilience