Early Learning Blog | Free Early Years & Primary Teaching Resources (EYFS & KS1) - Part 37
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Welcome to the ELHQ blog. We use this space to let you know about any new teaching resources we have put on to thesite and to share any interesting thoughts or observations relating to the world of early years education. Please feel free to share your thoughts about any of the issues raised by leaving comments underneath the posts.

 

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The impact of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) – Ofsted report

Last week a survey assessing the impact that the Early Years Foundation Stage has had on provision and developmental outcomes for young children was published. Based on visits to 68 Early Years Foundation Stage providers (between September and December 20101) as well as detailed discussions with 12 local authorities, the survey had a particular focus on the personal, social and emotional development and communication, language and literacy skills of children aged 0-5. (more…)

Encouraging cultural diversity in the early years

David Cameron’s speech last week regarding what he sees as the relative failings of multiculturalism in the UK put issues of cultural diversity back in the spotlight. There are arguments on either side, with many believing the concept of multiculturalism to be a divisive force that has promoted segregation rather than integration while others such as political theorist and author Professor Bhikhu Parekh view it as a valuable means of “intercultural fusion in which a culture borrows bits of others and creatively transforms both itself and them".

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Speech and language difficulties

I went to see the King’s Speech the other day and it made me think about developing resources to help those with speech and language difficulties. Anyway, when I got home I looked up some material I was given many years ago when working as a part-time teaching assistant while a law student at University. The information was from a really great organisation called I-can (the national education charity for children with speech and language difficulties) http://www.ican.org.uk/. It included a very interesting list of practical ideas for early years practitioners to try when working with children with speech, language and communication difficulties. I thought this list would be worth sharing so I’ve provided an abridged version below:

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Factors to consider when choosing books to promote positive images

1)    What roles do the male and females play, are males always dominant, leading characters? E.g. boys active and positive, girls passive and following. 2)    In what jobs are men and women portrayed, are they classic stereotypes? E.g. man as a doctor, woman as a nurse; man as a bus driver, woman as a teacher? 3)    What activities are boys and girls involved in, are they limited in their expectations? E.g. boys with construction kits and mending things; girls in domestic roles. (more…)

Government cut backs and policy changes affecting early childhood education

Here at ELHQ we strive to offer quality free teaching resources for parents, primary schools and nurseries across the world. We work with teachers on a day to day basis and have an active interest in early childhood education, particularly in the UK. It goes without saying that these are difficult times economically and tough decisions need to be made. Nevertheless it is important that consideration is given to the short and long term implication of policy decisions. The danger is that short term thinking and penny pinching could actually result in long term problems and underachievement leading to negative social and emotional problems for individuals and extra financial burdens for the state. The importance of early years experiences is highlighted in the Effective Pre-School and Primary and Secondary Education (EPPSE) report (a comprehensive study funded by the Department for Children, Schools and Families). The EPPSE clearly demonstrates that the quality and nature of early childhood education has an acute influence on a child’s educational achievement and their future social, emotional and behavioural well-being.

With this in mind I’d like to run through a few particular concerns which I know are shared by many. I’m aware that there are no easy answers when dealing with budget constraints, but I just wanted to highlight some issues that need to be debated:

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The Importance of Free-Flow Play

There is a lot of debate at the moment about the importance of learning through play. Against this backdrop we thought we’d take a brief look at the traditional notion of free play before giving an outline of a rather new take on things as expressed in a 2010 book by Sue Grieshaber and Felicity McArdle (educators and researchers at the School of Early Childhood, Queensland University of Technology, Australia). (more…)

Developing Personal, Social and Emotional Learning with Treasure Boxes

Just a quick note to draw attention to an idea that was featured in Nursery World magazine back in September. Someone sent this article to me recently and I thought it was rather good so I thought I’d share it with my readers. Written by Stuart Hall and Carole Gibbons from Tanglewood Nursery School the article discuses a novel idea of providing each child in the nursery classroom with their own ‘treasure box’ in which they can keep items that are precious to them from nursery, home or wherever. (more…)

An early years education blog is born

Howdy y'all. Just testing out our new blog. Please keep checking back, this post is obviously a bit pointless and frivolous but I promise that from now on the posts will be full off insightful and enlightened comments that will change your lives for the better. On second thoughts that might be a bit of an unrealistic aim. How about if I just promise to try and make it relatively interesting. Please feel free to offer your opinion on any of the issues raised. Peter

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