“Four guiding principles should shape practice in Early Years’ settings.

These are:

  • every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured;
  • children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships;
  • children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual

  needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents and/or carers; and

  • children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates. The framework covers the education and

  care of all children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.”

(EYFS Statutory Framework 2017)

In the EYFS at Windmill L.E.A.D. Academy these principles underpin our Early Years curriculum and guide our planning. Well-planned and well-resourced play activities which allow for progression in a child’s thinking and understanding provide the context in which these principles become the reality for all our children.

The continuous provision can be thought of in terms of the context and the enabling environment to support the opportunities that supports children’s play and progression.

The continuous provision within each defined learning area has the basic resources and experiences that are constantly available which are provided as a result of the practitioner’s knowledge of the developmental needs of the children using the space, as well as the children’s interests. It reflects breadth, range and balance in terms of the seven areas of the EYFS curriculum (see below), children’s interests and developmental levels.

Progression in play reflects the observation and assessment of children’s knowledge, skills and attitudes in order to provide developmentally appropriate experiences. Through our observations, assessment and professional judgement we gain valuable insights into how each unique child learns best. This information informs our planning to meet the needs of each individual child. Progression in play comes about as a result of a real understanding of the interests, needs and experiences of the individual child.

The adults at Windmill LEAD Academy are meticulously observant and are aware of each individual child’s needs and stages of development so as to recognise when the child needs to be left independently to perfect a skill by repetition and when he or she needs help in moving on to the next stage.

By careful observation the adults can provide experiences to challenge and extend young children’s learning.


“Educational programmes must involve activities and experiences for children, as follows.

  • Communication and language development involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
  • Physical development involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.
  • Personal, social and emotional development involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.
  • Literacy development involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest.
  • Mathematics involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and to describe shapes, spaces, and measures.
  • Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
  • Expressive arts and design involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.

Practitioners must consider the individual needs, interests, and stage of development of each child in their care, and must use this information to plan a challenging and enjoyable experience for each child in all of the areas of learning and development.”

(EYFS Statutory Framework 2017)



Carefully chosen and organised, quality resources placed in defined zones which are always available for children to access independently across every area of learning.


  • Takes account of children’s predictable interests
  • Provides security and continuity for children’s learning
  • Provides opportunities for all areas of the curriculum to be accessed
  • Enables children to develop concentration and perseverance
  • Promotes independence
  • Enables children to consolidate and develop skills and concepts
  • Supports the EYFS Principles



Enhanced provision is resources that are added to Continuous Provision within the learning environment which match the topic or the interests of children.

Examples of enhanced provision:

It could be a visitor – when our topic was Pets a Vet came to visit us and talk about her job. It could be a book – when our topic was Bears we added lots of books to our reading area like Going on a Bear Hunt and Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

It could be artefacts or resources – when our topic was Under the Sea we added small world fish, sharks, dolphins and sealife to the Water Area.

It could be an activity around the specific topic – when our topic was Minibeasts we went on a minibeast hunt.

It could be a a role play area linked to the topic – when our topic was Transport part of the enhanced provision was a Travel Agency.

Why do we have Enhanced Provision?

  • Links to the theme or topic
  • Links to the interests of the children
  • Adds interest to the Continuous Provision
  • Offers extension of learning experiences through play

To find out more about continuous provision across the EYFS please click here.