'Assessment  should not entail prolonged breaks away from the children, nor require excessive paperwork. When assessing weather an individual child is at the expected level of development, practitioners should draw on their knowledge of the child, their own expert orofessional judgement (EYFS, 2021)

Footsteps day nursery believe that we need to observe the children in our care and use these observations to chart children’s progress and plan exciting and meaningful activities and experiences. We use a secure online system called Tapestry. Practitioners can upload observations and wow moments and track development in the 3 Prime and 4 Specific areas of the EYFS, The Characteristics Of Effective Learning and the Leuven well-being & involvement scale.

This is a completely secure system, only the manager and the key person and the child’s parents will have access to the child’s learning journal and only parents who are registered will be able to access the system.

What to expect

Whilst we believe that assessment is important to support children’s development, we believe that the best way to promote and support children’s development is for the staff to spend time with the children, playing and learning together. Practitioners do the following observations.

Observations are done at the following times

- On entry - the key person will observe your child and find out the starting points in learning. They will find out what the child can do, what their interests are and use this to plan activities & experiences

- Half termly - Staff will do a further observation each half term. These will focus on what the child did, the role of the adult and how this learning can be extended at home.

-If we feel there s a need then families may recieve more observations in order to support the child's learning & development both at the setting and at home.

- You wll get regular photos of what your child have been up to at nursery. 

Parents can observe their children at home and upload these to Tapestry to share with staff

You can access your child's online learning journal at any time to see what progress they are making.


Practitioners use their knowledge of the child and their observations to complete a number of assessments throughout your child's time at nursery.

- Yearly in the spring term. Practitoners will spend time with th children and use their professional judgement to make an assessment on a child's learning & development in the prime & specific areas of learning.

- 2-Year Check - this is a statutory assessment around the child's 2nd birthday. Early intervention is important to ensuring all children get the support they need. This may be shared with your child's health visitor.

We encourage parents to be as involved in the process as possible, not only by reading & commenting on the observations but also by uploading their own pictures and comments of their child for us to enjoy and add to the assessment process. This partnership creates a tapestry, which grows as your child develops into a true keepsake of their early years. This secure system also allows you to add grandparents and other family members so the whole family can join in with a child’s nursery life in a way that wasn’t previously possible. It allows all registered people to your child’s journal to have equal access to it.

The staff will use either the nursery camera and computer or the tablet computers which have been bought for this purpose. There are 2 tablet computers on each floor. These tablets are to be stored overnight in a located cupboard. The staff are not permitted to take the tablets home and they are unable to access the tapestry system at all unless the manager has logged into the system from the main computer first. Staff are only allowed to use the nursery tablets and not permitted to bring their own phones, tablets or cameras onto the floor. Staff are not allowed to use the tablets for accessing tapestry. No other site will be accessed. Staff belongings are stored in the staff room.

If parents have no access to the Internet then a paper learning journal will be produced.


We can also use Tapestry to track the children’s speech and language with the Every Child a Talker monitoring tool. This allows staff to look at a child’s speech against an age related grid of expected speech development. Tapestry also allows us to track progress of any children with a Special Educational Need or Disability.

Other policies that can be read in conjunction with this are

  • Observation, Assessment & Planning (OAP)
  • Photographic
  • Safeguarding
  • Play & learning