The Government set out its definition of British values in the Prevent Strategy 2015, which reinforced the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.” As an early years provider we already focus on children’s personal, social and emotional development. We use the Early Years Foundation Stage framework to do this in an age appropriate way, through ensuring children learn right from wrong, mix and share with their peers and value other’s views, know about similarities and differences between themselves and others, and challenge negative attitudes and stereotypes.
At Ladybirds these values are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
Each year all the pre-school children decide upon their class ‘golden’ rules and the rights associated with these. We have a Children’s Committee which meets in the summer term to discuss issues that affect everyone. Every member of the children’s committee is voted in by their peers, following the presentation of their ideas.
Children have an annual questionnaire where they are able to put forward their views about the school.
The Rule of Law
The importance of laws, whether they be those that the children adhere to, their families or the country, are consistently reinforced at nursery.
Children are taught the clear rules of the nursery, particularly the value and reasons behind rules and laws eg that they protect us, the responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken. Visits from people who help us, such as the Police, help reinforce this message.
Pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, within the security of a safe and supportive environment. As a nursery we educate and provide boundaries for pupils to make informed choices. Young children are encouraged to recognise, understand and exercise their personal freedoms and through our e-Safety and PSED activities are advised how to exercise these safely.
Mutual respect is at the heart of our values. Children learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. All children are taught and encouraged to treat each other with respect. They are rewarded by earning a ‘gem’ which builds into a collective class treat. Circle time contributes to children learning how to take their turn and wait for others to speak.