The Importance of the Prime Areas of Learning within the EYFS
3rd October 2019
In the Early Years Curriculum, there are seven areas of learning which are grouped into two categories – ‘Prime Areas’ and ‘Specific Areas.’ The ‘Prime Areas’ are important because they lay the foundations for children’s success in all other areas of learning and of life:
Personal, Social and Emotional Development, e.g, encouraging interaction between peers, promoting independence and resilience skills through supporting the children in trying to do things for themselves, as well as solving their own problems.
Physical Development, e.g, developing the children’s motor skills through exciting activities including, ‘Squiggle Whilst You Wiggle’ and ‘Dough Disco.’ Our Specialist PE sessions provide the children with a range of skills, including Gymnastics, Dance, Swimming and Athletics.
Communication and Language, e.g, through Communication and Language groups, 1:1 or in small groups and also daily Phase 1, and Read, Write Inc Phonics sessions.
The ‘Specific Areas’ provide the range of experiences and opportunities for children to broaden their knowledge and skills:
Literacy, e.g, providing children with a range of opportunities to mark make, as well as them being exposed to reading a variety of rhymes, songs and books.
Maths, e.g, our daily rote counting sessions (starting from and counting to different numbers on the number line) enables children to recognise digits, as well as being given the opportunity to work out what is ‘one more’ and ‘one less’ than a given number.
Understanding the World, e.g, exposing the children to opportunities linked to the community, the world surrounding them and technology through trips and age appropriate activities.
Expressive Arts and Design, eg, encouraging the children to access different media and materials in the environment. Our Specialist Music sessions also help to develop the children’s imagination skills.
The ‘Prime Areas’ are fundamental to children's successful learning in the ‘Specific Areas.’ A strong foundation in the ‘Prime Areas’ is essential as evidence shows that if they are secure in all areas, it stands them in good stead for the future.
The EYFS framework states that there should be a focus on the ‘Prime Areas’ for younger children, with gradual introduction of support in the ‘Specific Areas’ for older children, as they develop. In all instances, we appreciate that the support should be appropriate to an individual child’s level of development and progress. As staff we all take a flexible approach, responding to each child as an individual learner.