“Every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their potential. Children develop quickly in the early years and a child’s experiences between birth and age five have a major impact on their future life chances.”

Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage- 2021

In our Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) we meet the needs of all of our children through a challenging and exciting provision that allows children to become more independent in their learning. We believe that children are more engaged when they have a choice in their learning and so our timetables includes lots of opportunities for children to ‘free flow’ and engage in play both indoors and outdoors. Through playing children are learning many new skills such as: risk taking; social skills; fine motor skills; problem solving; and communication skills.

At the end of reception year, EYFS staff will complete an end of year profile for each child to determine whether they are emerging or expected in the seven areas of learning and development. The areas are shown below.

Our planning is based on guidance in the Development matters document. More information can be found here 

EYFS Intent

At Willowbrook Mead Primary Academy, we greatly value the importance of the early years
foundation stage (EYFS) in providing a secure foundation for future learning and development. We strive for the children to become independent learners, whilst building on their communication and language. All staff have high expectations of all children, including SEND and disadvantaged. Our provision allows the children to make independent choices in their learning and develop their self- regulation skills.

Intent, Implementation and Impact 

EYFS Policy

EYFS Policy 2023-24

EYFS Curriculum

We cover a range of exciting topics throughout the year. Our long term plan can be seen here;

Reception Long Term plan 2023-24

Please click on the topics to find out what the children have been learning:


Please click on our topics below to find out what the children have been learning:


Phonics is a way of teaching children how to read and write. It helps children hear, identify and use different sounds that distinguish one word from another in the English language.

Phonics was first introduced in the UK in 2012 and since then has had great results. Unlike learning words by sight and shape, phonics has provided students with the ability to learn a skill that enables them to work out how to read almost any word in the English language.

The 44 sounds of the english language are not just made by up by single letters sounds, two letters can work together, sometimes three! These are know as: digraphs, trigraphs and split digraphs. A digraph is made up of two letters working together to make the same sound, for example ‘oa’ like in ‘boat’. Trigraphs are three letters working together to make the same sound, for example ‘air’ in ‘hair’. A split digraph is two letters that work together to make the same sound but are separated by another letter for example ‘i_e’ in ‘bike’.

At Willowbrook Mead, we use the ‘Read Write Inc’ phonics scheme. This is a DfE recognised scheme. More information about Read Write Inc can be found in the video below:

You can find more information about planning and teaching of phonics on our Early Reading and Phonics page 

On a weekly basis the children participate in focused maths sessions. During these sessions we will focus on the following;

  • Exploring the composition of numbers to 10
  • Counting and comparing numbers
  • Solving number problems such as addition, number bonds, 1 more and 1 less
  • Exploring shapes and patterns
  • compare length, weight and capacity

We follow the White Rose maths scheme. Our medium term plan can be found here

You can help your child at home with their maths by doing some of the following:

  • Practice counting- count everything!
  • Matching socks when sorting the washing
  • Look at numbers – on house doors, buses, road signs, sports tops
  • Look for shapes in the environment….Can you find a triangle, square, circle?

Number song

Shape song

Our indoor and outdoor environments support children to be fully engaged in purposeful play of their own choice and interest. We offer children many broad and varied learning opportunities within an enriching environment. Our classrooms promote curiosity, and our children are encouraged to follow their interests, have their own ideas, and independently access the resources available.

Willowbrook Mead EYFS Provision 

The Classes

The Foundation Stage is divided into Reception (children aged 4-5 years old) and Nursery (children aged 3-4 years old)


The Ladybird staff are Mrs Walter (currently on maternity leave) and Mrs Wahid (class teacher) and Miss Goodman (teaching assistant). We also have Mrs Sidat supporting in the nursery too.

Our nursery class starts school at 8:45 and collection is 11:45.

The Nursery children are very much a part of the whole school. They share an outdoor area with the reception children and are able to ‘free flow’ in between the two reception classes during the day.

Please contact the academy office for more information on admissions.


We have two Reception classes; Class 1 are the Busy Bees and Class 2 are the Butterflies. The Busy Bee staff are Mrs Wakeling (Class Teacher) and Mr Foster(Teaching Assistant). The Butterfly staff are Mrs Owens (Class Teacher) and Miss Turner (Teaching Assistant).

Information for Parents

For information about admissions into our Nursery and Reception classes, please see here 

If you wish to apply for a place in our reception class, please apply through Leicester City Council here

As from September 2021 the Department for Education have introduced a Reception Baseline Assessment (RBA) All children in reception classes will be assessed on their early literacy, communication, language and mathematics skills at some time during their first 6 weeks. This will provide a starting point from which to measure progress from reception to the end of key stage 2. Further information can be found by clicking on the link below. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/reception-baseline-assessment-information-for-parents

The links below are useful websites for you to access at home: