How children learn through play

Learning through play is the primary objective of the Pre-School team. We want our provision to inspire active learning and ensure high levels of engagement from the children whilst they interact with the activities of their choosing, building on an ethos of creativity and critical thinking.  We achieve this by providing open ended natural resources that will not only engage the children’s interests but also create stimulating challenges for them. A practitioner is always nearby to scaffold and guide them helping to enhance their learning and development further.

Children’s interests are very much ‘in the moment’ and this is why here at Christchurch Pre-school we are very much in the moment and our play is often spontaneous. Planning in the moment is all about capturing the moment for children to progress based on what the children are already deeply involved in. From this we are able to see the ‘teachable moment’ from the child’s perspective and know when to intervene and when to stand back and observe. It is all about capturing the moment of engagement and running with it to make sure the children progress.

To identify, support and extend all children’s knowledge, learning and development we work within ‘The Early Years Foundation Stage Framework’ (EYFS) which is the Governments recommended curriculum for ‘Early Years Safeguarding, Welfare and Curriculum from 0-5 years’ (birth to the end of reception year).

The EYFS has four principles to support the child

A unique child
Every child is a competent learner from birth who can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.

Positive Relationships
Children learn to be strong and independent from a base of loving and secure relationships with parents and/or a key person.

Enabling Environment
The environment plays a key role in supporting and extending children’s development and learning.

Learning and Development
Children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates and all areas of Learning and Development are equally important and inter-connected.

We are constantly considering the unique child and their characteristics of effective learning. We value each of the seven areas of development ensuring the children have a rounded well-balanced start to education.

The areas of development covered within the EYFS are;

  • Personal, social and emotional development
  • Communication and language
  • Physical development
  • Literacy
  • Maths
  • Understanding the world
  • Expressive arts and design

Each child will be allocated a keyperson who will build a partnership with the child and family to work in unison sharing achievements, learning and development. By observing the children at play, the keyperson will make assessments to link into ‘The Development Matters Framework’. These observations along with photographs and examples of work will create a portfolio of their learning journey with us, to be treasured and shared at regular intervals.