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Question Re Planning


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HI all


I am working in a nursery in cheshire, we at present follow the curriculum guidance for the foundation stage, using planning sheets from the cheshire years early years curriculum guidance.


we use the stepping stones as guidance for planning... ie shows an interets in numbers and counting. or shows an awareness of the cultures and beliefs of others...


we find these (the planning format) too fiddly, and time consuming.... we currently have to highlight in each area how it fits in with the foundation stage overall. so ie in physical area we could plan to do musical movement so we would then write 'musical and movement' and would have to colour code PD, CD, PSE (as areas of development) for the activity of musical and movement (we would then have to link that to a set area of the GS guidance, ie ... responds to music in a variety of ways),.... we have to do this for every area we set out in the room.

we then have to highlight whether it is adult led, small group, child initiated or large group... at least the planning looks colourful!!!!! but doesn't tell us anything about the child's interests ... basically our planning is a waste of time...


i have picked the brains of a friend who also works in a nursery in cheshire. they do not plan using the statements direct from the foundation stage guidance. nor do they have to colour code the areas of FS they relate to....


so anyway, my question is do we have to use the exact statements from the FS guidance.... or just to make sure we cover the 6 areas in some way... ie maths... counting, physical... running, creative.... painting.... etc....


im going round and round and the FS guidance document is just confusing me more... the planning at present takes too long and is taking us away from the children for too long, too often!


any ideas appreciated



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Hi Dawn,


I don't think you really need the exact phrasing, just to show how you link to FS. Planning can be as wide as to the Aspects, showing children's progress towards the elgs. You will need some sort of evidence for this, which can be a sticking point for some settings, so may be why they stick with awkward methods such as the one you describe (although, as you say, it certainly sounds pretty!! :D


I'm having a go at completely changing our planning, see here so will feed back when it's more up and running with our new methods.....assuming they work! :o




Please excuse superfluous link - I'm just enjoying being able to do it again!!!l LOL

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Hi Dawn

Great someone else from Cheshire . . we made the decision not to use Cheshire's 'Step by Step' format - far to fiddly, not easy to understand for parents etc. We had a visit from EY co-ordinators just before our last Ofsted (2004), who took us round in circles with planning and what should and shouldn't be included - then we eventually ended up with something even more complicated . . since then we have tried a few different formats - have finally settled with one which we are all happy with - but it is time consuming to 'type' or write up. We always use 'word for word' statements from the Curriculum guidance for the stepping stones and ELG's, but not for what we want the children to get out of the activity and progress. I think at the end of the day as long as you can show your activities are linked to the FS curriculum and that children are moving on through the stepping stones, go with something that you are all happy with.

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I am in a pre-school in chehsire and we dtched the step by step we use a much more parent friendly profile now and back up with photos we fill in a summery and next steps booklet on transition tho first year but so far so good.I do plan from stepping stones and elg tho

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