At Acorns we believe in using children’s natural creativity and curiosity to plan open ended activities that enable to children to learn through exploration and play. We are committed to nurturing each child as a unique individual and facilitate learning that is catered to each child’s needs.
These activities are planned and executed within the 2014 Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage. The Framework recognises that, whilst all areas of preschool children’s learning is interconnected, there are seven key areas of learning and development that must shape educational programmes in Early Years settings.
Three of the most crucial areas of learning are called the Prime Areas. These are considered to be ‘crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to
learn, form relationships and thrive.’
The Prime Areas are:
Communication and language development involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment; to develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves; and to speak and listen in a range of situations.
Physical development involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive; and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to
Personal, social and emotional development involves helping children to develop a positive sense of themselves, and others; to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.
Providers must also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied.
Literacy development involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters and to begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to ignite their interest.
Mathematics involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems; and to describe shapes, spaces, and measures.
Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community through opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.
Expressive arts and design involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.