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The Foundation Phase combines what was called Early Years Education (for 3 to 5-year-olds) and Key Stage 1 (5 to 7-year-olds) of the National Curriculum, and is based on the principle that early years’ provision should offer a sound foundation for future learning through a developmentally appropriate curriculum.
It brings consistency and continuity to children’s education at such an all-important period in their development.
The Foundation Phase places great emphasis on children learning by doing. Young children are given more opportunities to gain first hand experiences through play and active involvement rather than by completing exercises in books. They are given time to develop their speaking and listening skills and to become confident in their reading and writing abilities. Mathematics is practical so that children can see how problems are solved and how important mathematics is in their everyday lives. There is more emphasis on children understanding how things work and on finding different ways to solve problems.
The curriculum focuses on experiential learning, active involvement and developing each child’s:
Skills and understanding
Personal, social, emotional, physical and intellectual well being so as to develop the whole child
Positive attitudes to learning so that they enjoy it and want to continue
Self-esteem and self-confidence to experiment, investigate, learn new things and form new relationships
Creative, expressive and observational skills to encourage their development as individuals with different ways of responding to experiences.
Activities in the outdoors where they have first-hand experience of solving real-life problems and learn about conservation and sustainability