The Early Years Foundation Stage stages that:

Childcare must be provided with equality of opportunity and anti-discriminatory practice, ensuring that every child is included and supported.

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.

For children whose home language is not English, providers must take reasonable steps to provide opportunities for children to develop and use their home language in play and learning, supporting their language development at home. Providers must also ensure that children have sufficient opportunities to learn and reach a good standard in English language during the EYFS.


Work in Partnership with the parents-so we can get a better idea of how you can cater for the child.

Find out as much as we can about what languages the family uses at home and when. For example the parents may speak to each other in their first language but with their child they may speak in English.

Explain how important it is for their child to keep their first language and explain that we will be encouraging them to use it at your setting.

Find out if the family have different ways of raising children due to their culture. For example different ways of toilet training or different dietary requirements.

If the parents are new to the country or they grew up abroad, they may not be familiar with how early years education works in this country.  We explain our setting’s values, the principles behind the Early Years Foundation Stage and how their child will learn through play.

Encourage the parents to visit your setting to begin building strong links with home.


We have resources that reflect the backgrounds and cultures of the children within our settings:

have books in dual languages

use books, posters, toys and puzzles that reflect positive images of the different ethnicities of children in Britain

have dolls and small world figures that reflect different ethnic groups

use musical instruments and music from around the world

celebrate scripts and languages of the world by labelling areas in your setting in different languages

use persona dolls to explore issues of difference, similarity, race and understanding of different children’s lives

use story sacks to create a clear context for stories

use fabrics that have different ethnic prints, such as sari material and African prints.

 Create activities that reflect the different backgrounds and cultures of the children in your setting and in Britain. You could use books that reflect different cultures or tell fairy stories from other countries.

have role-play areas that can create different scenarios such as rain forests, travel agents or cafes from different countries and homes from different cultures.

Create activities that will stimulate children with EAL to communicate and talk.

Monitoring progress

regularly observe how the child uses language and record examples of what they say.

Encouraging first language

Encourage children who share a common language to use it within your setting. Using their first language will develop their knowledge of languages and they can then use this understanding to develop English.

Encourage all children in the setting to learn a few simple words of the child’s foreign language and use regularly.