Physical development

Physical development is one of the seven areas of the early years foundation stage and is used to develop a child's movement, handling of objects, understanding of their own body and health and levels of self-care. Children do this in range of ways including spacial awareness when moving, co-ordination of small and large movements, how to effectively use tools and equipment, saying when they do or don't need help, how show their feelings, learn that some behaviour is unacceptable and its consequences, how to play co-operatively and form positive relationships with adults and children.

Below you will find a range of practical articles and expert features that cover personal, social and emotional development to help you develop these skills and overcome challenges you might encounter. For more information on the EYFS you can download latest version of the statutory framework here.

Latest Practical

Steady under foot

Steady under foot

  • Kathy Brodie

When we talk about fine motor skills and coordination, it is often only hand-eye coordination that we consider. However, foot-eye coordination is just as important, says Kathy Brodie.

Strawberries and cream

Strawberries and cream

  • Ailsa Chapman

Children really enjoyed having strawberries as their universal school free fruit this week and their enjoyment of this wonderful summer fruit led to conversations around what other strawberry related foods they had tried.

At full tilt

  • Jenni Clarke

Challenging play is all about opportunities for extending physical limits and experiencing excitement – along with a little fear and uncertainty. From this children ultimately gain self-esteem and resiliance.

Ground patrol

  • Jenni Clarke

Taking risks is how young children develop strength, balance, co-ordination and body awareness. In part two of this series Jenni Clarke investigates how loose parts placed outdoors can build and challenge skills. For three-years and older.

Marvellously messy!

  • Annette Rawstrone

Don’t be surprised if your child comes home from pre-school looking a little grubby. They will have been exploring messy play, an activity which is all about tactile exploration, says Annette Rawstrone.

Chip off the block

  • Jenni Clarke

The final article in this series focuses on children using real tools while creating and building outside. The benefits include building core body and arm strength, hand-eye co-ordination and concentration.

Latest Features

Steady under foot

Steady under foot

  • Kathy Brodie

When we talk about fine motor skills and coordination, it is often only hand-eye coordination that we consider. However, foot-eye coordination is just as important, says Kathy Brodie.

Strawberries and cream

Strawberries and cream

  • Ailsa Chapman

Children really enjoyed having strawberries as their universal school free fruit this week and their enjoyment of this wonderful summer fruit led to conversations around what other strawberry related foods they had tried.

At full tilt

  • Jenni Clarke

Challenging play is all about opportunities for extending physical limits and experiencing excitement – along with a little fear and uncertainty. From this children ultimately gain self-esteem and resiliance.

Ground patrol

  • Jenni Clarke

Taking risks is how young children develop strength, balance, co-ordination and body awareness. In part two of this series Jenni Clarke investigates how loose parts placed outdoors can build and challenge skills. For three-years and older.

Marvellously messy!

  • Annette Rawstrone

Don’t be surprised if your child comes home from pre-school looking a little grubby. They will have been exploring messy play, an activity which is all about tactile exploration, says Annette Rawstrone.

View all Physical development

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