Fundamental British Values in the Early Years
The fundamental British values of democracy, rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance for those with different faiths and beliefs are already implicitly embedded in the 2014 Early Years Foundation Stage.
To help demonstrate what this means in practice in the early years, King’s Cross Academy has developed the following examples based on what is in the statutory guidance.
Democracy: making decisions together
As part of the focus on self-confidence and self-awareness as cited in Personal, Social and Emotional Development:
- EYFS staff encourage children to see their role in the bigger picture, encouraging children to know their views count, value each other’s views and values and talk about their feelings, for example when they do or do not need help. When appropriate demonstrate democracy in action, for example, children sharing views on what the theme of their role play area could be with a show of hands
- Staff support the decisions that children make and provide activities that involve turn-taking, sharing and collaboration. Children should be given opportunities to develop enquiring minds in an atmosphere where questions are valued
Rule of law: understanding rules matter as cited in Personal Social and Emotional development
As part of the focus on managing feelings and behaviour:
- Staff ensure that children understand their own and others’ behaviour and its consequences, and learn to distinguish right from wrong
- Staff collaborate with children to create the rules and the codes of behaviour, for example, to agree the rules about tidying up and ensure that all children understand that rules apply to everyone
Individual Liberty: freedom for all
As part of the focus on self-confidence & self-awareness and people & communities as cited in Personal Social and Emotional development and Understanding the World:
- Children develop a positive sense of themselves. Staff provide opportunities for children to develop their self-knowledge, self-esteem and increase their confidence in their own abilities by, for example, allowing children to take risks on an obstacle course, mixing colours, talking about their experiences and learning
- Staff encourage a range of experiences that allow children to explore the language of feelings and responsibility, reflect on their differences and understand we are free to have different opinions, for example, in a small group discuss what they feel about transferring into Reception class
Mutual Respect and Tolerance: treat others as you want to be treated
As part of the focus on people & communities, managing feelings & behaviour and making relationships as cited in Personal Social and Emotional development and Understanding the World:
- We create an ethos of inclusivity and tolerance where views, faiths, cultures and races are valued and children are engaged with the wider community
- Children at the Academy acquire a tolerance and appreciation of and respect for their own and other cultures; know about similarities and differences between themselves and others and among families, faiths, communities, cultures and traditions and share and discuss practices, celebrations and experiences
- Staff encourage and explain the importance of tolerant behaviours such as sharing and respecting other’s opinions
- Staff promote diverse attitudes and challenge stereotypes, for example, sharing stories that reflect and value the diversity of children’s experiences and providing resources and activities that challenge gender, cultural and racial stereotyping
If you would like to know more about the promotion of British values in the Early Years please don’t hesitate to get in touch.