EYFS Statutory Educational Programme
Physical activity is vital in children’s all-round development, enabling them to pursue happy, healthy and active lives. Gross and fine motor experiences develop incrementally throughout early childhood, starting with sensory explorations and the development of a child’s strength, co-ordination and positional awareness through tummy time, crawling and play movement with both objects and adults.
3 and 4 year-olds will be learning to;
- Continue to develop their movement, balancing, riding (scooters, trikes and bikes) and ball skills.
- Go up steps and stairs, or climb up apparatus, using alternate feet.
- Skip, hop, stand on one leg and hold a pose for a game like musical statues.
- Use large-muscle movements to wave flags and streamers, paint and make marks.
- Start taking part in some group activities which they make up for themselves, or in teams.
- Increasingly be able to use and remember sequences and patterns of movements which are related to music and rhythm.
- Match their developing physical skills to tasks and activities in the setting. For example, they decide whether to crawl, walk or run across a plank, depending on its length and width.
- Choose the right resources to carry out their own plan. For example, choosing a spade to enlarge a small hole they dug with a trowel.
- Collaborate with others to manage large items, such as moving a long plank safely, carrying large hollow blocks.
- Use one-handed tools and equipment, for example, making snips in paper with scissors.
- Use a comfortable grip with good control when holding pens and pencils.
- Show a preference for a dominant hand.
- Be increasingly independent as they get dressed and undressed, for example, putting coats on and doing up zips.
By creating games and providing opportunities for play both indoors and outdoors, adults can support children to develop their core strength, stability, balance, spatial awareness, co-ordination and agility. Gross motor skills provide the foundation for developing healthy bodies and social and emotional well-being. Fine motor control and precision helps with hand-eye co-ordination which is later linked to early literacy. Repeated and varied opportunities to explore and play with small world activities, puzzles, arts and crafts and the practice of using small tools, with feedback and support from adults, allow children to develop proficiency, control and confidence.