Qualification: NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator
Unit: Unit 3.1: Understand the value of play in Early Years
Learning outcome: Understand children’s rights in relation to play
Assessment criteria: Explain how settings meet the right for children to play
Early Years settings are designed to ensure that the right of children to play, as outlined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child’s Article 31, is met.
By providing a safe, secure and stimulating environment where children can freely explore and discover, Early Years practitioners are able to create an atmosphere conducive to learning through play. This allows young children to develop the skills needed for life-long learning, physical development and language acquisition through games and activities that are meaningful to the child. As well as providing the space, Early Years settings also provide equipment and resources for children to learn through play.
The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) also sets out provisions for practitioners to use physical activities and games in order to promote the development of gross motor skills. Additionally, practitioners can plan activities that allow children to express themselves creatively through art, music and dance.
Early Years settings should provide a balance of child-initiated and adult-led play as well as opportunities for both indoor and outdoor play. There should be planned outings to local community play areas for settings that do not have a dedicated outdoor area.
Early Years practitioners also have a responsibility to promote the importance of play to the children’s parents and carers and may also provide resources to support play at home.