Learning to read is probably the single most important academic skill we acquire through formal education, affecting as it does, every other area of learning; from reading instructions in maths, to drawing upon inspiration from stories for art.
Curriculum is a ‘hot topic’ at the moment in all phases of education, but perhaps nowhere more so than in the early years. Sue Cowley takes a look at what the DfE and Ofsted have been saying and how settings have responded.
There is no doubt that the pandemic truly exposed the value of the early years, yet concurrently, exposing the fragility of the sector. This is why Rose Porter explains that the need for an ambitious early years strategy is never more urgent.
The following article discusses the current opportunity within the early years sector to review and improve assessment processes, providing a context, current practices and points for reflection. This is the first article in a four-part series from David Meechan's current research.
This month I am thrilled to have Aaron Bradbury back again with another insightful review, alongside a fantastic home-learning companion book which I share a snippet from here. As for our picture books, take a look at a hand-picked selection of recently published children's texts focusing on two important areas: friendships and feelings.
The days of starting a child's reading development, age five, with an ‘early reader’ are long gone. Children will always pick up a book when it feels interesting to do so, just like adults. With so many great books and resources available, it has never been easier to find the inspiration.
Stephen Kilgour, from the Foundation Stage Forum and Tapestry, discusses the problem with moving away from tick-list style assessments for children with learning differences.
It is vital to reflect on our practice and provision and adapt appropriately, but this also requires the government to do the same. Dr Sue Allingham questions why there isn't joined-up thinking about what is important across the sector, including how early childhood education should work.
Babies attending settings for the first time this year would have been born or were very young during the various lockdowns. Rebecca Martland discusses the implications of this through theory and young children's development, offering valuable guidance to implement in your settings, as well as recent case studies to reflect on.
Movement and active play is central to children's learning, as is communication and langauge. Tania Swift considers ways in which we can support active development of communication and language through both child and adult-directed learning.
Settings are assessed on the quality of education they provide, which is their curriculum. This article explains what is meant by ‘curriculum’ and how leaders can be instrumental in designing a framework of learning tailored specifically for the children in their setting.
Many PVI settings find themselves in an increasingly schoolified and top-down pressured system. In this piece David Meechan addresses the schoolification of the early years through the new Development Matters guidance.