EYFS and Montessori Curriculums Explained
We practise the Montessori Method of education in line with the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum.
The EYFS curriculum sets out 7 areas of learning and development, which we work to achieve, through the Montessori Methods. Learning and development is one of the key areas of the EYFS. It shapes the activities and experiences that childcare providers offer children in their foundation years. The EYFS states that the educational programme offered must involve activities and experiences that cover 7 significant and inter-connected areas of learning and development. These 7 areas are divided into two categories. Prime Areas: These areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive.
Prime Areas: These areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive.
- Personal, Social & Emotional Development (PSED)
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.
- Communication and Language (CL)
Providing children with 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 (PD)
Involves providing opportunities for 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 food.
Specific Areas: Three prime areas are strengthened and applied in these areas.
- Literacy (L)
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 (M)
Children need to be provided 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 (UW)
This 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 (EAD)
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.
Montessori materials help children to explore and master their environment through activities which aid the development of the whole personality.
- Activities of Everyday Living – learning the skills of daily living These are designed to put children in touch with their environment. Children learn concepts of sharing, taking turns and good manners. The aim of these activities is to build task organisation, cognition and self-confidence and independence, ready for more complicated learning.
- Sensorial – exploration through the senses The senses are the means by which we gain information about the outside world. Through experimenting, touching, feeling, listening and actually physically experiencing concepts such as size, proportion, shape and colour, we provide a natural stepping stone towards progression in language, maths and music.
- Mathematics – concrete to abstract Mathematics materials help children gain an understanding of concrete quantities which are then related to abstract numbers. The child manipulates quantities and numbers by means of the four mathematical operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and eventually progresses to more formal mental calculations.
- Language and Literacy – from spoken to written Emphasis is laid on building the child’s vocabulary by songs, rhymes, stories and drama. Our reading method is phonetic. From an early age we encourage children to hear the sounds that make up words through an extended version of the traditional “I Spy” game. When the children are ready they learn to associate those sounds with the letters and to form those letters as a preparation for both reading and writing. Combined with this phonetic approach, the children are encouraged to recognise and read whole words which are non-phonetic.
- Culture – our world The child is introduced to cultural activities such as drama, music and art. Subjects such as geography (discussing where the children come from, their customs and festivals), science (studying about minerals, weather, undertaking simple experiments: sink and float, using magnets and magnifying glass, etc), ICT (Laptop, iPad and camera) and nature (birds, animals, human body, plants and flowers) develop children’s appreciation of the world around them. Children will also be given French (or any other non-English language) lessons involving conversation, building vocabulary and nursery rhymes.