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10 Signs of Excellence from Outstanding EYFS

Contrasting attributes, skills & behaviors in children from outstanding EYFS setting versus those without


29 February 2024


#Special Feature #Spotlight On


#Nursery #Pre-Prep

10 Signs of Excellence from Outstanding EYFS


We sat down with Ms Caitlin Williams – Assistant Head: Head of EYFS to discuss our EYFS provision. Our children in EYFS embody the 10 signs of an excellent EYFS provision, giving them the foundations to thrive in their next stage of education.

Does your child possess the attributes below? Are you looking for an outstanding EYFS provision? Get in touch with our Admissions Team who would love to talk to you about your child and organise a tour of our school: admissions@hallfieldschool.co.uk | 0121 455 1496

1. Confidence and Secure Attachment

A child from an outstanding EYFS setting is likely to be happy, comfortable, confident, and secure in the learning environment with both peers and adults.


2. Independence

Children develop a strong sense of independence, demonstrating capabilities beyond expectations for their age. Staff support them in progressively building independence.

3. Resilience

The child is resilient, not afraid to face challenges, takes pride in achievements, and sees mistakes as a natural part of the learning process. The setting promotes a culture of resilience. The ‘I can’ attitude is really important.


4. Perseverance

There is an emphasis on perseverance, encouraging children not to give up easily and fostering the ability to keep going even when faced with difficulties.

5. Curiosity and Questioning Mind

Children exhibit a curious and questioning mind, showing enthusiasm and inspiration by exploring the natural world. They ask questions, seek information, and express a keen interest in their surroundings. They are children who are always in awe and wonder. When they go through school and grow as adults – they should be thinkers, making good contributions to the world.


6. Emotional Literacy and Mental Health Awareness

Children are equipped with emotional literacy, able to talk about feelings, recognise emotions in themselves and others, and employ strategies for managing their emotional states. An excellent EYFS setting prioritises mental health awareness.

7. Academic: Advanced Phonic and Reading Skills

Children demonstrate advanced phonic knowledge and early reading skills due to a well-structured curriculum that builds a strong foundation in literacy from a young age – all progressively taught before they reach Reception.



8. Mathematical Knowledge and Conceptual Understanding

A child from an outstanding EYFS setting possesses a solid understanding of numbers, not just recognising them but comprehending how numbers are composed and used in various contexts, demonstrating deeper learning.

9. Motor Development

Both gross and fine motor skills are well-developed. Settings such as the mud kitchen provides ample opportunities for outdoor activities, play, and interventions to align physical development with conceptual growth. Their brain develops faster than their body, so when a child is ready to write their name but can’t physically, the teacher will ensure they teach activities where they can build those muscles etc in order to write with control.



10. Sense of Identity and Self-Organisation

Children have a strong sense of identity, recognising and writing their names, understanding their belongings, and demonstrating early skills in self-organisation, which lays the groundwork for future learning and organisation in school.


Happy | Inspiring | Purposeful

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