Early Years Foundation Stage
Nurseries, pre-schools, reception classes and childminders all work within the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework, which sets standards for care and learning. It helps ensure children’s safeguarding and welfare, and as you can see below, all of the learning and development areas it sets out are supported by the sort of day-to-day play and activities I describe on the Play and activities page. The learning and development areas are:
- Personal, social and emotional development
- Physical development
- Communication and language
- Understanding the world
- Expressive arts and design
Please feel free to ask me more about the Early Years Foundation Stage or you can find further information here
As part of their work within the EYFS, childminders and other early years providers support each child’s learning and development by paying attention to their interests and needs and offering them interesting play opportunities to build on these. Records of each child’s ‘learning journey’ including photos and written observations of what they did or said whilst busy playing are made and shared with parents. Written summaries of children’s progress are made at regular intervals in partnership with parents.
Partnership with parents
When parents share their valuable knowledge of their child’s development, needs and interests with me I can provide the best possible early years care and play and learning for their child.
Before I begin caring for a child parents complete a form giving details of their child’s individual needs and interests so that I can support them to settle into my home environment as easily as possible. Settling in usually starts with two visits of about an hour where parents can stay and complete the necessary paperwork whilst their child has a chance to begin to explore my home environment. Further settling in sessions and strategies are tailored to suit each individual child.
Parents can keep me regularly updated about their child’s well-being, family news and anything they have noticed about their child’s learning and development in any of the following ways: a quick chat when they arrive with their child; writing in the learning journal and bringing it each time their child attends; emailing at any time.
"Our daughter has been with Amy since she was 7 months and is now 28 months. We're leaving Bristol and the worst thing about the whole thing is that she won't be able to be cared for by Amy anymore - she absolutely adores her and her lovely family! Since day 1 we've been so impressed with Amy; she's kind-hearted, loving and nurturing to the end, but professional with it. She took on our expressed breast milk, dummy and napping only in the buggy challenges without any problem and her calm, kind way of working meant these didn't seem to present any issues.
The range of activities she does with the children is wonderful, our little girl's love of the outdoors has been encouraged at Forest School and all of the paintings and drawings she has been coming home with are lovely! Our daughter is growing into such a kind, independent, empathetic little girl and so much of this comes from Amy and the care she has given to her. All in all, we couldn't have wished for a better childminder. Amy has become like part of the family to our little one and we'll most definitely be back to visit her!"
MP, March 2017
"My daughter has been in Amy's care for two years now and she is wonderful! She provides such a calm and nurturing environment. The learning activities are so varied and high quality - we have been so pleased with how our daughter has progressed; moreover, she has always been very happy with Amy and has really enjoyed her time there. Amy is thoughtful and thorough - we have been very happy with the personalised care and feel very lucky to have found her!"
LK, May 2015
"I could tell within minutes of meeting Amy that she was the childminder for us! Calm and attentive with the children and full of feedback for us on what had happened in Finley's day. We loved that everyday Amy filled out a little report on his play activity and learning experiences including photos and special observations. If there wasn't time to catch up I always knew I'd have this to look forward to later so that I didn't feel like I was missing out on my son's development. With our comments too it also now serves as a wonderful memory of 18 months of his life before we moved out of Bristol.
We have pictures of him painting enormous pictures along the garden shed, playing trucks in the sand box and enjoying treasure trove after treasure trove of baskets from her extremely well stocked toy collection, mostly made of wood or other good quality natural products. We took inspiration too from Amy's amazing lunches - lamb tagine and rice, rosemary & lemon chicken with pesto pasta and all the usual favourites!
Over all though while the setting had everything we wanted, it was Amy herself that made it the caring, nurturing environment that a small child needs. I felt that she really understood my son and could see the tiny changes in him that only a parent would really notice. Best of all though was seeing Finley's reaction when I said we were going to Amy's house - jumping up and down in excitement and running to her front door everytime we arrived!"
KW, September 2014
"Amy Boyd provided childcare for my two children for a month in April-May 2013 when my regular childminder was on extended leave, and I have been delighted with her as a childminder. My children are four and 21 months, and they were both so happy to come to her house to play. Amy has a lovely manner with the children; very calm and nurturing, which they both responded to very well. She supported the development of both children by extending their play and talking to them about what they were doing, and they would both happily spend hours like this. She has a good, well-organised selection of toys which they really enjoyed exploring.
Amy's children were all very kind and supportive with my two - I would always find one of them reading to, talking to, or playing with them when I arrived to pick them up. My children very much enjoyed having older children around and miss them now they're back with their normal childminder.
I found Amy very professional and easy to work with from the first point of contact, throughout the signing of contracts and on an everyday basis. She writes a good clear record of what the children have been doing in their books so I can talk to them about it later.
I would highly recommend Amy as a childminder based on our experience."
SD, June 2013