Moving the Early Learning Goal Posts: Science

Sep 16, 2021

Ah yes, I’d heard there are new Early Learning Goals. But science isn’t in the EYFS Framework, is it? Not explicitly, no. However, you will likely have been supporting your Early Years team with their understanding the world (UW) area of learning as a precursor to your KS1 and KS2 curriculum area, so it’s important you are aware of the changes. As of September 2021, new Early Learning Goals (ELGs), drawn from the updated 2021 EYFS Framework are in place. The development towards these goals is explored in greater detail in the new non-statutory Development Matters.

OK, but presumably they aren’t that different? Not hugely, no. The new ELGs that connect to science are:

UW: The Natural World

  • Explore the natural world around them, making observations and drawing pictures of animals and plants
  • Know some similarities and differences between the natural world around them and contrasting environments, drawing on their experiences and what has been read in class
  • Understand some important processes and changes in the natural world around them, including the seasons and changing states of matter

OK, that was easy! Anything else I should be aware of? Yes, just one other thing: the new guidance for EYFS practitioners has removed the ‘exceeding’ categorisation for the EYFS Profile. However, this is for paperwork purposes only – an attempt to reduce the workload of teachers – not a removal of the need to challenge and extend able children. The DfE explains: “Teachers will be expected to continue to identify and stretch more able children.”

In a nutshell… Support Early Years teachers to reflect on and implement scientific exploration.




Older articles

Science Links

We have scoured the internet using our science antennae to compile a comprehensive list of relevant sites for your perusal.

Remote learning: science

We explore possible options for remote science learning where bubbles and individuals are self-isolating.

Contact Us

To ask a question, or for help and support, fill in the form below:

8 + 9 =

Keep up to date with the latest from Subject Leaders





Subject Leaders is a trading name of Subject Leaders Ltd, a registered company in England & Wales No 1233 22 77.

Registered Office: 36 Station Road, Leigh on Sea, UK SS9 1SU.