Early Years Foundation Stage

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Question: Analyse, in terms of psychological theory, a recent topical event concerned with child care or education. In September 2008 a new national curriculum for the under-fives will be introduced. This new curriculum is known as the Early Years Foundation Stage framework and all childminders and nurseries will be legally required to follow its guidelines. The framework sets out around 500 developmental milestones between birth and primary school and requires under-fives to be assessed on writing, problem solving and numeracy skills. The framework focuses on ‘learning through play’ and states that by the age of five children should be able to do such things as write their own name, count up to ten and understand that people have different needs, views and beliefs. There are many arguments for and against the Early Years Foundation Stage framework. Some people believe that children will be forced into academic work too early and others believe that childminders and nurseries should be responsible for making sure that children have reached a certain standards before they begin school. Frameworks such as the Early Foundation Stage framework usually come into effect after vast amounts of research into the issue. There are many psychologists who have carried out research into early learning and the importance of play. John Piaget has carried out a massive amount of research into how children think and learn and has had a major influence on education in the western world. Piaget carried out research into play and divides play into three types: mastery play, symbolic play and play with rules. Between 0 and 2 children will take part in mastery play, this is very repetitive and involves the child trying to control their movements, for example learning to crawl or walk. Between 2 and 7 children will take part in symbolic play which involves children pretending to be

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