Plan opportunities which encourage children’s expressive art and design

Qualification: NCFE CACHE Level 3 Diploma for the Early Years Educator
Unit: Unit 3.4: Contribute to enabling play environments
Learning outcome: Be able to plan and lead opportunities which encourage children’s engagement in expressive arts and design
Assessment criteria: Plan opportunities which encourage children’s expressive art and design

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One of the four specific areas of learning is Expressive Arts & Design. The EYFS framework describes this as:

The development of children’s artistic and cultural awareness supports their imagination and creativity. It is important that children have regular opportunities to engage with the arts, enabling them to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials. The quality and variety of what children see, hear and participate in is crucial for developing their understanding, self-expression, vocabulary and ability to communicate through the arts. The frequency, repetition and depth of their experiences are fundamental to their progress in interpreting and appreciating what they hear, respond to and observe.

EYFS

Furthermore, the EYFS sets out more detailed Early Learning Goals in relation to this area of learning:

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ELG: Creating with Materials
Children at the expected level of development will:

– Safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function;
– Share their creations, explaining the process they have used;
– Make use of props and materials when role playing characters in narratives and stories.

ELG: Being Imaginative and Expressive
Children at the expected level of development will:

– Invent, adapt and recount narratives and stories with peers and their teacher;
– Sing a range of well-known nursery rhymes and songs;
– Perform songs, rhymes, poems and stories with others, and – when appropriate – try to move in time with music.

EYFS

This learning area can be compared to the arts and technology subjects at school, including Art, Music and Design.

For this assessment criterion, you will be required to plan opportunities which encourage children’s expressive art and design skills.

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Some of the learning opportunities that you may wish to consider include:

  • Mark-making activities (drawing, painting etc.)
  • Cutting and glueing
  • Rhymes (including rhymes with actions)
  • Dancing (including games like musical statues)
  • Making and playing musical instruments, such as drums and shakers
  • Sensory/messy play with sand, water, slime, cornflour etc.
  • Modelling with clay or plasticine
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