All those working to support the early years children can use Development Matters as part of daily observation, assessment and planning. It can also be used at points during the EYFS as a guide to making best-fit summative judgements, with parents and colleagues across agencies, in relation to whether a child is showing typical development, may be at risk of delay or is ahead for their age.
The age/stage bands are the same as they were in previous EYFS Practice Guidance. They overlap because these are not fixed age boundaries but suggest a typical range of development. When using Development Matters it is however important to remember that babies, toddlers and young children develop at their own rates and in their own ways. The development statements and their order are not necessary steps for every child and should not be used as checklists.Development Matters in the Early Years Foundation Stage – FINAL