Harewood Avenue, Pontefract, WF8 2ER

01977 791306


Harewood Centre Nursery School

The Curiosity Approach


We were very excited to start our Curiosity Approach Accreditation at the end of January 2022.


The accreditation is a year long process. We cannot wait to show you the transformations that we make to our learning environments (inside and out) and daily practice throughout the process.

How does the Curiosity Approach help children develop?

Children will be supported to develop skills that will be relevant to them, growing up in an ever-changing world.

These include:

  •  Independent thinking
  •  Stronger non-verbal communication
  •  Language and verbal communication
  •  Problem-solving
  •  Lifelong learning
  •  Risk taking
  •  Imagination
  •  Respect for resources and the natural world
  •  Creative and critical thinking

By developing a child’s curiosity and sense of adventure, they acquire important skills such as problem solving and independent thinking, which will help them in all areas of their lives as they grow into adulthood.

The Curiosity Approach aims to create ‘thinkers & doers’ by putting the child at the centre of their own development and learning.

The Curiosity Approach encompasses many early years philosophies, including: Reggio Emilia, Te Whãriki, Montessori, Pikler and Steiner.


Children learn through play with everyday items to develop their own natural curiosity and eagerness to explore and create. This encourages the children to create their own toys to play with whilst also learning about the world around them. 

Children are encouraged to use their imagination to figure out what each item is for and how to use it rather than being given a toy with a fixed identity, which shapes how a child will play it.

The Curiosity Approach allows children to lead their own learning and develop at their own pace. 

Why is Curiosity and Initiative Important in Learning?

There are many similarities between The Curiosity Approach’s values and those set out in The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Framework 2021. The Framework agrees that children learn and develop well in enabling environments, with teaching and support from adults who respond to their individual interests and needs. It recognises that play is essential for children’s development. The EYFS Framework also states that “children learn by leading their own play”.

When setting out the three characteristics of effective teaching and learning, the Framework again draws upon values shared by The Curiosity Approach.

These are:

  •  Playing and Exploring – where children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’.
  •  Active Learning – where children concentrate and keep on trying, even when they encounter difficulties, and enjoy their achievements.
  •  Creating and Thinking Critically – where children have and develop their own ideas, and can make links between them, and develop strategies for doing things.

Whilst playing actively and thinking critically, children will develop the skills to help them become independent thinkers and strong communicators – skills which are vital if they are to become lifelong learners.

They will take the time to be more curious, and take the initiative to explore what is happening all around them.