↑ Return to Curriculum

Expressive Arts & Design

Expressive arts and design involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play, and design and technology.

By the end of reception children will develop their skills in:

  • Exploring and using media and materials: children sing songs, make music and dance, and experiment with ways of changing them. They safely use and explore a variety of materials, tools and techniques, experimenting with colour, design, texture, form and function.
  • Being imaginative: children use what they have learnt about media and materials in original ways, thinking about uses and purposes. They represent their own ideas, thoughts and feelings through design and technology, art, music, dance, role-play and stories.

How can parents and carers help?

  • Painting, drawing, colouring just for fun. Do not expect your child to draw or paint anything recognisable at first. The fun is in the creation, not in the end product.
  • Allow your child to make models using construction items (duplo, stickle bricks etc), but also from old cereal and egg boxes.
  • Allow your child to play with empty boxes – these are often as much fun as the item that was inside them!
  • Allow your child to develop their imagination. An old sheet over a table or pegged up outside can make a brilliant den and will give hours of fun.
  • Save old saucepans, tins and allow your child to make music. Sing along to nursery rhymes and pop songs!
  • Develop your child’s imagination. Act out stories; take part in role play with them by playing shops, schools, teddy bear picnics. Try and collect a few dressing-up clothes, old t.shirts, skirts, shoes and scarves have many possibilities!
  • If you are anxious about your child spoiling their clothes dress them in old ones so they can really have lots of fun without being worried.