Creating and thinking critically 2Statutory Requirements

It is an EYFS Statutory Requirement for childminders to have an understanding of the three Characteristics of Effective Learning (COEL) and to reflect on the ways in which children learn. The three COEL are explained in Development Matters and are as important to a child’s development as the learning and development areas. The three COEL are:

  • Playing and Exploring (engagement)
  • Active Learning (motivation)
  • Creating and Thinking Critically (thinking)

The three COEL support children’s learning across all the learning and development areas, so all childminders need to know what they are and more importantly how to promote them in the children you care for.


Promoting the Characteristics of Effective Learning Poster10 Ways for Childminders to put the Characteristics of Effective Learning (COEL) into Practice

Understanding the COEL is vital for every childminder. Not only will you be expected to know this information during your Ofsted inspection, it is also a huge benefit to the children you look after if you can help them to acquire the skills in the Early Years that they will need to help them to succeed in school and become learners for life. [more]


which characteristic of effective learning should i circleHow to write about the Characteristics of Effective Learning (COEL) in childminding learning journeys

Ever find yourself staring at that row of letters and boxes on your learning journey form that asks you to circle which Characteristic of Effective Learning (CEOL) you are seeing in your learning journey observation and feeling baffled? [more]


activities-that-promote-the-coel-creating-and-thinking-criticallyHow to promote the Characteristic of Effective Learning (COEL): Creating and Thinking Critically





active-learning-for-childmindersWhy childminders must allow children to fail




characteritics-of-effective-learning-pack-for-childmindersWhich are more important: the Learning and Development Goals or the Characteristics of Effective Learning (COEL)?




Products that can help you

Characteristics of Effective Learning Pack


For tools, activities, CPD and ideas to put the COEL into practice in your childminding settings.


 Supporting Documents

EYFS Statutory Framework – A full description of the exact written requirements for the Progress Check Age 2. 

Development Matters – explains what the COEL area and gives some basic examples of how to put them into practice.