Our Curriculum

Tiddlywinks Nursery School implements the Early Years Foundation Stage – (EYFS) across our settings. The Early year’s foundation stage is designed to ensure children from birth to five years old learn through play, the EYFS is a structure of learning, development and care. The EYFS sets out seven areas of learning and development for children, three prime areas, which are communication and language, personal, social and emotional development, and physical development and four specific areas, which are  literacy, understanding of the world, mathematics and expressive art and design.


Curriculum Areas of learning

The early years foundation stage (EYFS) sets standards for learning, development and care of your child from birth to 5 years.  As an early year’s provider implementing the EYFS  curriculum, have freedom to develop a broad curriculum for the children  within each of our settings which includes ‘Letters & Sounds’ which is a systematic approach for teaching children to read using phonics.

Teaching Phonics to our pre-school children.

Recap existing sounds

  1. Quick write of existing sounds.
  2. Introduce a new sound of the day.
  3. Picture to match sound i.e., ow – cow (from Twinkle)
  4. Introduce a new tricky word.
  5. Three words with the sound you are learning, your turn my turn to allow children to hear sounds in the words.

If you are interested in more information, please read the wide-ranging enclosure attached:

We are also trained and have invested heavily into another alternative tool kit  supporting our children’s development by reacting to speech & language delays, the ‘Welcomm Programme ‘ which is a complete speech and language toolkit from screening to interventions. It is suggested that delayed  language skills can lead to under-performance later in life, yet many nursery setting and primary schools have unidentified speech & language difficulties, this Welcomm programme investment applied with our  underpinning knowledge and training can help turn this around. The toolkit comes with an age-appropriate Big Book of Ideas providing a total of over 150 instant play-based activities so you can take appropriate action straight away. Activities can be used with parents at home too, so that support is provided whether or not a child is referred to a speech and language therapist. For more information, please read the wide-ranging enclosure attached.

In  September 2021, the early years foundation stage (EYFS) 2019 introduced the Education Inspection Framework into eyfs partly because  Ofsted / government was now realising that there are concerns that what children learn may have been second to delivering performance data leading to unnecessary workloads for early years teachers having a collection of performance data resulting in ‘Teaching to the test’ and a narrowing of the curriculum  which has negative effect on the children of more disadvantaged and the least able children, where now  profile although is not mandatory now allows our professional judgment with our best endeavours to complete  and provide the information to year 1 teachers and parents on developmental stages with more room for our professional judgement  based on  knowledge and experience, instead of using the early learning goals or age bands in the framework to track children’s progress. Age bands have been simplified to avoid tracking activities that do not support child development now having two band  assessments being : expected and  emerging. Children’s progress will be reviewed when they’re between 2 and 3 by an early year’s teacher or health visitor, however we do a 2-year report on development and attributes. All children are different, in the ways they behave, learn and think, and children think differently to adults therefore as part of our inhouse training our teachers may reflect age-appropriate theorist within our curriculum  having influences from many for example, most contemporary  Alistair Bryce-Clegg an established educational consultant specialising in the education of children in the Early Years and one of our favourites for all age children.

Notable childhood Theorist,Lev Vygotsky, 1896-1934 & jean Piaget 1896-1980 believed that children learn actively and develop their knowledge and thinking skills through hands on experiences.

After this period came influences of Reggio Emilia after the second world war.  Reggio Emilia approach to education was developed  in the northern Italian town with the same name. It was founded by a teacher named Loris Malaguzzi with the help of local parents and citizens (mainly women) living in the town and the surrounding villages. Devastated by the destruction of the war, Mr Malaguzzi and people in the community believed that the educational system had to change. Parents in the area were looking for childcare that fostered critical thinking and collaboration. This child-centred approach was based on Malaguzzi’s belief that a child has 100 languages to express themselves, and he wanted to use these languages to support children’s learning and understanding of the world.

Maria Montessori method of education also  just after the war named after its founder Maria Montessori has an approach to classroom learning that emphasizes independence and choice. This theory of teaching understands that children have an innate interest to learn and will be able to do so in a suitable environment.

Tiddlywinks Nursery School are inspired by ‘The curiosity approach’  co-founders Lyndsay Hellyn & Stephanie Bennett whom likewise, find that childhood appears to be getting shorter, academic forcefully coming in, changing times with technology that play seems to be less important but, we agree that the curiosity approach is creative, based around play and less dependent or addicive to T.V. Ipads, technology in general. Early years is an age, stage and time all on its own.

One creator & influencer Magda Gerber (November1,1910 – April 27, 2007) an early childhood educator in the United States and is known for teaching parents and caregivers how to understand babies and interact with them respectfully from birth. The seeds for her passion for infant care come from paediatrician Emmi Pikler who influences the curiosity approach.

Based on all the above, our curriculum has a mixture but we endeavour to replicate a child’s home yes with routines, rhythms, formalities with all the home comforts. Most of our play resources and equipment is community play with its natural, environmental considerations and safety are of highest standards with great outdoor facilities allowing both outdoors indoors and indoors outdoors without decay or weathering supporting  children’s learning mostly being taught through games and play. 

The areas of learning are:

  • communication and language
  • physical development …  fine & Gros motor skills
  • personal, social and emotional development
  • literacy
  • mathematics
  • understanding the world
  • expressive arts and design


We focus on Early language, more broad rich activities reducing the amount of time we spend on unnecessary paper work  whilst assessing progress and what comes next.

The principles underpin the EYFS allowing teachers to plan specific knowledge and skill having open ended play opportunities so children can explore and represent their ideas through play.

Assessment is a tool to support children development but take place proportionally to have best impact of development and is not intended to be a series of trackers, charts or tick list as Ofsted/ government previous framework that was proved to be burdensome to produce that does not directly support children’s development.

Children learn best with high quality interactions with adults therefore not to be burdened in unnecessary administrative tasks instead, empower children to be creative, resilient,  confident and kind.