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Early Years Foundation Stage



The Early Years Foundation Stage document is the National Framework that all registered childminders in England work to. If you are a childminder in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, your regulations are different and you can find information about what you will work to by using the links below.

Scotland Childminding Association

Wales; Care and Social Services Inspectorate

Northern Ireland Childminding Association

If you are registered on the Early Years Register to care for children from birth to the 31st August after their 5th birthday, you will need to abide by the Early Years Foundation Stage.

The EYFS comprises the Statutory Framework which contains your legal responsibilities for children's health, safety, learning and development as well as guidance documents that can help you to meet the statutory requirements.

The EYFS states that certain records need keeping in writing. While it suggests that childminders do not need to have their policies in writing, and that the childminder can decide if risk assessments are recorded or not, it can be deemed good practice to have these documents in writing too in order to show how childminders can relate the information to parents and others who need to know. It is a requirement that childminders maintain the records needed and share them with parents, carers and other professionals including the police, social services and Ofsted as appropriate. See more about keeping records.

If you would like to purchase policies, risk assesments, consent forms etc. to save you time in creating them yourself, you can find them in our shop.

Compulsory Document

It is compulsory to be familiar with and abide by the EYFS if you are a childminder who is registered on the Early Years Register, but it is not compulsory to have a hard copy.

Download the Statutory Framework For The Early Years Foundation Stage

From September 1st 2021, the revised EYFS comes into force. Until September you need to continue to use the current EYFS. As you may be aware, there will be a revised Development Matters document in September too. This hasn't been published yet, but is expected soon. Download the Revised EYFS

We are in the process of obtaining printing quotes so we can supply hard copies of the new EYFS and Development Matters as we know so many of you prefer to work from hard copies.

We are also running Virtual Sessions via Zoom which will clearly explain the changes to the EYFS and Development Matters. The session will also explain why the changes have been made and how the amendments will affect your work with children and their families. Joining these sessions isn't a requirement but may help save you time in learning what the changes are.

Book your place on a Virtual Session here

Understanding and Working with the EYFS Online Course

A step by step guide through the EYFS and what you need to do as a childminder to meet the requirements.

Guidance Documents

There are several non statutory guidance documents available to download that you can use to help you meet the requirements of the EYFS.

A Know How Guide to the EYFS progress check at age two

This guidance sets out the aims and principles of the two year check and contains guidance on assessment and completing the check

Development Matters in the Early Years Foundation Stage

This document has now been archived by Government, but contains lots of information about Characteristics of Effective Learning and how to help children reach the milestones in the Unique Child column

Early Years Outcomes

This guidance that has replaced Development Matters and consists of the 'A Unique Child' column taken from the Development Matters document

Frequently Asked Questions.

4Children have produced answers to some frequently asked questions about varying childminder ratios.

What to expect, when?

4Children have produced guidance for parents about their child's learning in the EYFS

Oral Health

From September 2021, the EYFS 3.44 has added the requirement to promote oral health of children attending your setting. The Revised Development Matters Document that also comes into force in September says 'Talk to children about the importance of eating healthily and brushing their teeth. Consider how to support oral health. For example, some settings use a toothbrushing programme.'

Childminders already promote healthy living by providing and teaching about healthy diets, washing hands after visiting the toilet, touching pets, and before eating etc. Many already talk to children about the importance of regular tooth brushing and the role of Dentists. While there isn't a requirement to provide toothbrushing as part of your day to day routines, you may consider this if you feel it would be beneficial to the children in your care.

The facts

Tooth decay is the most common oral disease affecting children and young people in England, yet it is largely preventable.

Although oral health is improving in England, the oral health survey of 5 year olds in 2017 showed that just under a quarter have tooth decay (PHE National Dental Epidemiology Programme for England, 2017). Each child with tooth decay will have on average 3 to 4 teeth affected. For those children at risk, tooth decay starts early. The first survey of 3 year olds in 2014 found that 12% had visible tooth decay, with on average 3 teeth affected.

Almost 9 out of 10 hospital tooth extractions among children aged 0 to 5 years are due to preventable tooth decay and tooth extraction is still the most common hospital procedure in 6 to 10 year olds, according to PHE data up to 2019.

Resources and training

Govt. Child Oral Health Information

Free online learning- All our Health- Child Oral Health

Public Health England Factsheet A quick guide to a healthy mouth in children

Change 4 Life information about how to reduce sugar in diets

Oral Health Foundation Helpline. 'As a charity dedicated to improving oral health, we want to make sure that you are provided with the best information and advice about the health of your mouth. Staffed by fully trained oral health experts and dental nurses, the Dental Helpline will provide free and impartial advice on a range of topics, such as dental terms and treatment procedures, oral hygiene, current legislation and regulations, dental charges, complaints procedures, and referrals to other organisations.'

Dental Buddy – free download Oral health education units, each with a lesson plan, presentation and activity. Newly updated the new versions to include 3 units for early years education, along with another 3 units for both key stage 1 and key stage 2::

BrushTime - free download Toothbrushing in groups and settings. Everything you need to know!:

All About Teeth - free download This will shortly be added to Dental Buddy but you can still download as a free resource separately. This is a good background guide to teeth!

A-Z or Oral Health Our directory of oral health information for you to read online:

Not forgetting our shop: You can browse online and purchase educational resources to include toothbrushes and toothpaste, reward charts and stickers, tooth brushing models and posters, so please do have a look and see if there is something that will help and inspire!

Then of course last but not least there is the Dental Helpline Originally provided for the public but also often used by professionals who need help with guidance or signposting. You can call them on 01788 539780 or email from the website:

Govt. Guidance. Health Matters- child dental health explains how poor dental health impacts on wellbeing as well as health