The Early Years Foundation Stage, setting the Standards for Learning, Development and Care for children from birth to 5

The EYFS has 4 key themes:

WFLH-01  A Unique Child

Every child is a competent learner from birth who can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.


1.1 Child Development

  • Child development
  • A skilful communicator
  • A competent learner

1.2 Inclusive Practice

  • Equality and diversity
  • Children’s entitlements
  • Early support

1.3 Keeping Safe

  • Being safe and protected
  • Discovering boundaries
  • Making choices

1.4 Health and Well-being

  • Growing and developing
  • Physical well-being
  • Emotional well-being

WFLH-02  Positive Relationships

Children learn to be strong and independent from a base of loving and secure relationships with parents and/or a key person.


2.1 Respecting Each Other

  • Understanding feelings
  • Friendships
  • Professional relationships

2.2 Parents as Partners

  • Respecting diversity
  • Communication
  • Learning together

2.3 Supporting Learning

  • Positive interactions
  • Listening to children
  • Effective teaching

2.4 Key Person

  • Secure attachment
  • Shared care
  • Independence 

WFLH-03  Enabling Environments

The environment plays a key role in supporting and extending children’s development and learning.


3.1 Observation, Assessment and Planning

  • Starting with the child
  • Planning
  • Assessment

3.2 Supporting Every Child

  • Children’s needs
  • The learning journey
  • Working together

3.3 The Learning Environment

  • The emotional environment
  • The outdoor environment
  • The indoor environment

3.4 The Wider Context

  • Transitions and continuity
  • Multi-agency working
  • The community

WFLH-04  Learning and Development

Children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates and all areas of Learning and Development are equally important and inter-connected.


4.1 Play and Exploration

  • Learning through experience
  • Adult involvement
  • Contexts for learning

4.2 Active Learning

  • Mental & physical involvement
  • Decision making
  • Personalised learning

4.3 Creativity and Critical Thinking

  • Making connections
  • Transforming understanding
  • Sustained shared thinking

4.4 Areas of Learning and Development

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Communication, Language and Literacy
  • Problem Solving, Reasoning and Numeracy
  • Knowledge and Understanding of the World
  • Physical Development
  • Creative Development