The Wantage

telephone01235 760213

6-7 Church Street Wantage OX12 8BL

Open from 7.30am to 6pm

OFSTED-Logo                                       Rated across        all measures         "GOOD"   September 2016

                            "Children are confident happy and behave well."          Ofsted September 2016  

"Staff know children's interests and provide activities and experiences to engage and motivate them. Children make good progress."            Ofsted September 2016


EYFS: The Early Years Foundation Stage

The government requires us as a registered provider to follow the learn-ing and development requirements set out by the Early Years Founda-tion Stage (EYFS).

The learning and development requirements cover;

  • The areas of learning and development which shape activities and experiences
  • The early learning goals that providers must help children work to-wards to be ready for school
  • Assessment arrangements for measuring progress

Whenever we follow the learning and development requirements we use the four guiding principles:

  • A unique child: every child is unique, constantly learning from birth, and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured
  • Positive relationships: children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships
  • Enabling environments: children learn and develop well in enabling environments where their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents
  • Learning and development: children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates

The different areas of the learning and development requirements:

There are seven areas of learning and development that shape edu-cational programmes in early years settings. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are par-ticularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learn-ing, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive.

These three areas, the “prime areas”, are:

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

Providers must also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied.

The specific areas are:

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

 All the activities and experiences we offer our children involve these are-as and are broken down as below;

  • Communication and language development involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations
  • Physical development involves providing opportunities for young chil-dren to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, con-trol, and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the im-portance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food
  • Personal, social and emotional development involves helping chil-dren to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form posi-tive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate be-haviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities
  • Literacy development involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest
  • Mathematics involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and to describe shapes, spaces, and measure
  • Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to ex-plore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the en-vironment
  • Expressive arts and design involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing op-portunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feel-ings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology

(source EYFS 2017)

Choose what interests you

We use the EYFS ‘Development Matters Guidance’ to help us assess your child’s progress through observing them in play and during struc-tured activities then checking what we see against what we would expect, based on their age.

Learning through structured activity

We have weekly planning to determine our play activities and build on what your child has already learned to do, what they are interested in and at the same time extend their learning into new areas to ensure they get a broad experience. For example; if your young child loves playing with water we will introduce cups of different size so they can practice pouring water into bigger or smaller cups to support learning about ca-pacity. We may then go on to explore sand and how that works when it is wet or dry and then perhaps take that outdoors to our big sandpit where they can explore it on a larger scale (we have a garden hose too so who knows where this might lead!). We are always monitoring what each child is enjoying at any time and will change planning in response to them.

Learning through play

Play is essential in helping children understand the world around them and in helping them to develop socially and emotionally. All our play op-portunities encourage children to play and learn at their own pace, choosing to doing things that they are interested in, playing alone or with other children. Our staff will support the children in their play and encour-age them to build their confidence and push new boundaries.


During their time in this room your baby will be encouraged to discover and explore their senses and improve their coordination. Even very young babies are able to enjoy heuristic play, treasure baskets, water play, textures, colours and sounds. Babies spend time outdoors in our special 'little ones' garden that has a soft playing surface and lots to ex-plore. Planning for the babies learning and development needs is dis-played inside the baby room. Wherever possible we try to be flexible and responsive to babies’ home routines and individual needs. When you first bring your baby to nursery the team will discuss baby’s routine with you and work to replicate this wherever possible within the structure of the nursery day.


As your child matures s/he will start to enjoy more structured play and we offer a wider range of activities: paint, malleable materials, fine motor and gross motor activities, indoor and outdoor play, stories, music and role-play. The Tweenies’ day is more about routine, but children are encour-aged to choose where and how their learning will take place. Many chil-dren are toilet training at this stage and the team will work with them and you to achieve this as easily as possible. Planning for the Tweenies is found on the notice board inside the room and is individualised, reflecting the different children in the room and en-courages learning, playing skills, confidence and independence.


Our preschool team work to successfully scaffold the learning for children around age three to school age. The team coordinate lessons and plan-ning to ensure children are making appropriate development.

Children are supported in their learning until they are ready to be suc-cessful independent learners and the focus is on preparing them for the structure and independence needed to enable a smooth transition to school.

Well planned play is central to children’s learning in the classroom, this way learning is both challenging and fun. We develop long term plans to deliver the learning and development requirements as well as weekly plans based around the children’s current interests and developmental journeys. You can see all the planning on display inside the room.

Children aged 3 and 4 are constantly encountering new experiences which they try to understand. As they do so they explore the world around them, ask questions, extend their skills, develop their confidence and build on what they already know. Our aim is to ensure we maximise their opportunities to extend their learning and skills and prepare them for school. During their time in our Preschool the children will develop through a number of activities which we do regularly to prepare the chil-dren for big school such as helping them to recognise and write their own name, and familiarising them with basic math’s and phonic knowledge.

In the preschool room we have qualified practitioners who ensure chil-dren are learning and developing ready for school and the quality of our education is inspected by OFSTED in the same way as a school.