Nurture Outdoor Kindergarten

Early Years Framework

Supporting development and learning

At Nurture Outdoor Kindergarten we are guided by the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), a framework which recognises that every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfil their potential. Early experiences are important for children because they impact greatly on their learning and development, and provide the foundation children need to make the most of their abilities and talents as they grow up.

EYFS and Outdoor Learning

With its specific emphasis on children as active learners, the EYFS encourages careful consideration of the nature of the environment in which children spend significant periods of time. Being outdoors offers many benefits to children, both physically and mentally. The outdoor environment encourages problem-solving, inventiveness and resourcefulness, creative thought and expression, and development of the imagination. There are unique opportunities to develop gross and fine motor skills. There is time and space for children to play, to initiate and lead to their own activities, to engage in physical and group activities that develop social and emotional competence, and to make deep and meaningful connections with the natural environment, others and the self. All areas of the curriculum can be accessed fully and are well supported by ‘real life’, hands-on learning experiences within a context which is relevant to the child.

And, of course, the outdoor environment offers more space than indoors and so is particularly important for those children who learn best through active movement. For many children, playing outdoors at their early years setting may be the only opportunity they have to play safely and freely while they learn to assess risk and develop the skills to manage new situations.

Last but not least, parental involvement in children’s learning is also particularly important in the early years as parents and carers are the child’s first educators. Early years settings are increasingly involving parents in developing and using their outdoor areas and in supporting other outdoor learning opportunities.

Early Years Framework

  • Every child is a unique child, who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured
  • Children learn through positive relationships
  • Children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners and parents/carers
  • Children develop and learn in different ways and at different rates.

The EYFS Framework explains how and what your child will be learning to support their healthy development.

The three prime areas of learning and development are:

  • Personal, social and emotional development.
  • Physical development.
  • Communication and language.

Alongside these are four specific areas through which the prime areas are strengthened and applied:

  • Literacy.
  • Mathematics.
  • Understanding the world.
  • Expressive arts and design.

Play is the highest expression of human development in childhood, for it alone is the free expression of what is in a child’s soul.

Friedrich Froebel