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Learning Method

In the EYFS, children learn by playing and exploring, being active, and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside.

The EYFS has Characteristics of Effective Teaching and Learning, which are key characteristics that children develop within their play. These characteristics of effective teaching and learning ensure that children gain the skills which underpin their learning and development across all the prime and specific areas of learning.

Having these required characteristics of teaching and learning in mind helps to support practitioners' abilities to support ongoing development and underpin their holistic knowledge of the EYFS.

  • Playing and exploring show how the child is engaging as they investigate and experience things firsthand.

  • Active learning, which shows how a child is motivated to keep on trying when they encounter difficulties or how they enjoy achievements.

  • Creating and thinking critically shows the process of thought behind learning, developing their own ideas, and creating strategies for carrying these out.


Play in Early Years Foundation Stage is essential to young children. Through play, children will learn and develop in all seven areas of EYFS. Children will be able to engage creativity and team-building skills with solo and group play, all of which can benefit their Communication and Language development.

By deviating between indoor and outdoor play, it helps children with their learning outcomes on Understanding the World, as well as giving them opportunities to explore new ideas and engage problem-solving skills. Equally, by using play to teach children about a range of events and also the necessity of proper safety precautions, you can relate it to their History and Personal, Social and Emotional Development outcomes.

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