EYFS blog 3: How do we create an enabling environment?
Looking at each aspect of the environment from a child’s point of view can be a great way to start when it comes to thinking about what changes can be made to improve the environment provided by your early years setting.
Important factors in creating an enabling environment…
- Create an environment that is welcoming, warm and facilitates a sense of belonging.
- Ensure staff understand the importance of building warm and supportive relationships and nurturing the child’s development.
- Provide interesting and familiar objects and resources for children to explore independently, allow children to decide what they play with, where they play and who with. It is also important to offer activities that are new to them.
- Ensure that the activities offer room for indoor and outdoor play if possible and that there is sufficient space for the children to move and explore.
- Provide a range of activities which serve different purposes and promote different areas of development, such as: inspire role play, problem solving, exploration of personal relationships and quiet time and reflection.
- Try to ensure activities focus on process more than the end result.
- Ensure that the environment and activities support the individual needs of the children. This includes making sure the resources are at a child-friendly height and easily movable.
- Focus on each individual child’s progressing development and consider how you could incorporate their interests into activities. When could they have choice and control, and is the environment meeting their needs?
- Consider creating an area that is quiet and allows children the time and space to focus without noise distractions. This may be especially helpful for children with special educational needs (SEN).
- Involve the children as much as possible when you create the setting’s ground rules for behaviour.