The importance of play in the Foundation Stage is embedded in its curriculum guidance. However, from the earliest stages of education the emphasis has increasingly been placed on formal learning and assessment, particularly of literacy and numeracy. This narrow vision of education is squeezing play-based learning out of the curriculum, despite the fact that children are still in their early years of development.
This document provides advice to division secretaries about the changes to the National Strategies for Literacy, including phonics, and Numeracy. It can be used for answering members’ enquiries on the changes to the revised Primary Framework for Literacy and Mathematics and on the DCSF advice on phonic work and choosing an effective phonics programme.