Understanding The World
Understanding The World
Understanding the World is a Specific Area of Learning.
The statutory framework for the EYFS (2023) states that educational programmes must involve activities and experiences for children, as set out under each of the areas of learning.
‘Understanding the world involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community. The frequency and range of children’s personal experiences increases their knowledge and sense of the world around them – from visiting parks, libraries and museums to meeting important members of society such as police officers, nurses and firefighters. In addition, listening to a broad selection of stories, non-fiction, rhymes and poems will foster their understanding of our culturally, socially, technologically and ecologically diverse world. As well as building important knowledge, this extends their familiarity with words that support understanding across domains. Enriching and widening children’s vocabulary will support later reading comprehension.
The curriculum that you develop should be based on your community of children and the cultural capital you would like them to have accessed during their time with you. Some children have experience of visiting your local library, parks in your area and local museums but some children won’t have had any of these experiences. When designing your curriculum, you must decide on the experiences you want to give your children and what you want the children to learn from them. Consider asking families to come and talk or share resources/photos about their professions and interests.
There is an emphasis on books and vocabulary in the revised EYFS (2021) and the books that you choose to incorporate into your curriculum is an important decision. Again, the books that you select should be based on your community of children and which books you feel should be made available to them. They should cover stories to share and read, and also non-fiction reference books that can support and extend the children’s learning. There also many songs, poems and rhymes that link to children’s growing understanding of the world around them including those from a range of cultures; consider asking for suggestions from families. The National Literacy Trust and the Book Trust have information on their websites about sourcing quality books.