Since 2018 and the formation of the Health Improvement Commission the Be Active team, in conjunction with the States Early Years team, has worked closely with Early Years settings to enable providers to offer opportunities for young children to be active and interactive and to develop their co-ordination, control, and movement.
We know that children learn from movement and physical activity. Children’s early experiences of movement and physical activity can help them develop the skills, attitudes and confidence to be active throughout their life.
Recently we have focused on supporting children’s gross motor skills - when a child uses their whole body in a movement, such as jumping or running and fine motor skills - when a child uses precise movements using specific body parts, such as the thumb and finger to pick objects up.
The Chief Medical Officer guidelines are that young children (birth to five years) should be physically active every day for at least 180 minutes (3 hours). The more the better. This should be spread throughout the day, including playing outdoors.
How we have worked with Early Years Settings
· We have provided annual training days to staff at Early Years Settings and Childminders and supported a multi-agency approach to training days on understanding Physical Development birth to 4yrs with a focus on gross motor skills and fine motor skills.
· We have organised fun days attended by 300 children celebrating The Daily Mile at KGV playing fields and community centre and enjoying Window in the Willows walk at Les Vardes quarry. We have also provided three mornings of activities organised for childminders We have allocated four sets of grants to early years providers and childminders enabling them to buy tools/ resources to enhance physical activity in their settings.
· We have gifted 100 balance bikes to Early Years settings and provided ‘Ready Set Ride Training’.
Government guidelines for physical Activity for early years (birth – 5 years)