This open letter to the government, signed by over 100 childhood and education professionals, urges the Government to stop intervening in early years education and let children develop in a natural and healthy way. It corresponds with much of the Steiner Waldorf philosophy that children learn best through play, with plenty of creative and outdoor time; and that formal education should commence from ages 6/7. Steiner Kindergartens operate on these principals to provide a loving, gentle and successful environment in which children thrive.
“The early years of life are when children establish the values and mindsets that underpin their sense of self, their attitude to later learning, and their communicative skills and natural creativity.
Though early childhood is recognised world-wide as a crucial stage in its own right, Ministers in England persist in viewing it simply as a preparation for school. The term ‘school readiness’ is now dominating policy pronouncements, despite considerable criticism from the sector.
The role of play is being down-valued in England’s nurseries. For many children today, nursery education provides their only opportunity for the active, creative and outdoor play which is recognised by psychologists as vital for physical, social, emotional and cognitive development.”