Children’s Play, Learning & Development

Course Description

This is a highly practical course and will introduce you to a wide range of interesting and enriching topic areas relevant to early years practice, from practical skills for looking after children to psychological theory of development. You will gain an in-depth understanding of the development of children and how this influences their progress as they grow.

Entry Requirements

Students will be expected to have five GCSEs at grade 9-4, or a Merit in a relevant vocational Level 2 Diploma (or equivalent). In addition, students will be expected to have GCSE grade 4 in English Language and a minimum of grade 3 in Mathematics. This course requires a high level of motivation and professionalism due to the amount of time spent in childcare settings.

Features of the Course

You will develop skills in supporting the development of children through the use of activities and observation. In class you will be carrying out practical demonstrations and practical exercises to prepare you for your work placements with a range of age groups and settings. You will also be assessed using a variety of techniques such as external exam, coursework and demonstrations.


Assessment will be carried out through different methods:
• Examination:
Unit 1 – Child Development
• Examination (Synoptic Assessment):
Unit 2 – Development of Children’s Communication, Literacy and Numeracy Skills
Unit 4 – Enquiries in Current Research in Early Years Practice
• Internally set coursework
• Assessed observations in work placement.

Exam Board: Pearson Edexcel

Enrichment and Work Experience

Work placement will support your coursework and by the end of the second year you will have achieved a minimum of 750 hours in a variety of settings such as nurseries and schools. You will complete two days a week in placement in order to complete 750 hours to achieve your Early Years Educator qualification.

As part of enrichment, you will have the opportunity to undertake a first aid qualification and gain experience in a forest school environment. We will visit a range of universities and have guest speakers that work in the child care sector.

Additional Information

Essential additional costs for the course are: uniform for work placement (approx. cost from £8-£40), Enhanced DBS (approx. £55), Forest School visit (approx. £30) and First Aid Certificate (approx £30).

Future Career Opportunities

On successful completion of the course you will gain the new EYE (Early Years Educator) status. This is a recognised vocational qualification that will help you gain employment in childcare or progress to higher education.

Why study at The Sixth Form Bolton?

The teaching staff for this course have a vast amount of work experience with children in a range of settings and countries. This experience is used to enhance your learning environment and give you greater knowledge about the everyday work carried out in a child care setting. Practical activities are used in class to support your learning of theoretical concepts; this also benefits your work placement by enabling you to try out new activities, sometimes things that you haven’t done since being a child yourself. We work alongside local nurseries and schools to ensure that you have a happy and valuable experience working with children birth to eight years.