Learning Through Play
Learning through play can be much misunderstood and a few parents can get anxious that their children are not doing any “formal” learning whilst at nursery.
At Kids Allowed, we believe children learn “all day, every day” and we have a strong ethos of learning through play and purposeful play. This is underpinned by our “right here, right now” planning where the team observe children’s interests and respond in the here and now to support children’s learning through the things they are naturally interested in and inspired to try.
For the first time, we have taken a cold, hard look at the effectiveness of our practice and we are thrilled with the results.
We are committed to publishing these results every year so that parents can see how we are doing in playing our part to give your children the best possible start in life.
At Kids Allowed our primary purpose is “Making Children Happy” and part of our mission statement is “To help our children develop into happy, confident, young people and give them the best foundation for lifelong learning.”
Tying in with that philosophy, we hope this evidence gives those parents that already support with our ethos of learning through play the knowledge that they are doing the right things whilst also giving those that worry that more formal learning should take place, the confidence to relax and trust that they are doing the best for their children.
We feel our approach, rather than ‘hot housing’ children and starting their formal learning too early, focuses instead on children being happy and enjoying their time at nursery and preschool. We have a well regarded approach to our learning which encompasses the room’s layout, furniture, resources, activity planning, the Kids Allowed team, the child and of course the parents and all of these things come together so that our children learn naturally, attain at a high level and most importantly, have fun!
The graphs below summarise the learning outcomes against the Government’s Development Matters Document which we have used to form the basis of our Tracker Booklet that every child has at the back of their learning journey.
Please note the following when interpreting the graphs -
• “Exceeding” means progress is being made beyond that ordinarily expected for the child’s age range, and that the child has not only completed all “Development Matters Statements” for their own age range, but also the next age range too. Exceptional!
• “Completed” means all “Development Matters Statements” for this age range have been achieved. Given that most children still have a number of months to go before they are expected to complete their age range*, this is a fantastic achievement.
• “Emerging” means progress is being made with some “Development Matters Statements” for this age range still to be achieved. We must remember, this in no way should be considered a learning concern as many of the children still have a number of months to go before they are expected to complete their age range.*
• The 17 “aspects” feed into the 7 “areas” of learning. For example “Understanding” is part of 3 aspects that are summarised as the area “Communication and Language” or “CL”.
• The data is based on 181 children who are leaving our Preschool to start school reception class in September 2012.
• The 17 Aspects of the Early Learning Goals are designed to be achieved by children at the end of reception class.
• 12% of children included in this data have additional needs or have English as a second language. Both these factors can affect the time it takes children attain certain aspects.
*many children still have a number of months to go before they are at the end age of their range (for example, many children are 51 months old at the time of doing the assessment of their outcomes, which are measured against the Development Matters Statements for children age 40-60 months, meaning that child still has a further 9 months to complete the development matters statements for that age range and in the context of a 4 year old, 9 months is a very long time and a lot of life experience and learning to go!).
We think the combination of great parenting, effective learning through play at nursery, talented colleagues and a company that is passionate about delivering on its primary purpose of “Making Children Happy”, is creating fantastic outcomes for children. To have so many children completing aspects and areas, many with months to go before they are due to and in addition over 30% of the outcomes being completed not just for the age of the child, but the next age band too, Kids Allowed feel we can say with confidence that Learning Through Play works.
For more information about our approach to learning through play, please click on the above link to watch a short video