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New study shows British children need to get out and play more

British child

With stories of childhood obesity never far from the headlines, it’s easy to believe that each generation of children is lazier than the last. But a new survey of 6 – 11 year olds suggests that British children believe they’re wrapped in cotton wool by their parents and would like more freedom to play outside. 

 

The research by family skincare brand Sudocrem found that almost 3 in 5 children (57%) said their parents worried too much about their safety and almost two-thirds of those aged 8 – 11 (64%) thought they should be able to go to the park with their friends, unaccompanied by an adult.

Helping children to write their name

child writing their name

From a very early age a child writing their name is the first significant academic milestone. There is a lot to be done before this stage in terms of development of fine motor skills, such as sticks in playdough, tracing in gloop, the list is endless.

When it comes to learning to write their name a child should be first encouraged to trace dots in various shapes such as waves, zigzags and then specific shapes such as circles, squares, triangles and rectangles. Once they have achieved this they can start to trace over letters and numbers. These are featured in a free practice kit available when you join the free newsletter.

Award-Winning Charity Launches Free Training For London Nurseries

Child playing at nursery

AN AWARD-WINNING charity with twenty years’ experience bringing the benefits of music therapy to vulnerable people in the UK and around the world is launching a new awards scheme for their highly acclaimed training course.

 

Music as Therapy International is a South London-based registered charity who believe passionately in the power of music to make the most of people’s potential, overcoming obstacles such as disability, trauma and mental illness. Their unique approach sees them train care staff to use simple music therapy techniques and musical activities, providing them with resources and professional support to make sustainable change.

 

Nurseries must find new ways to raise funds due to impending cuts

Nursery Shop Online

The government’s controversial new funding policy is going to put the future of hundreds of nurseries at risk, a Labour MP has warned.

 

Pat McFadden said nursery schools could lose up to a third of their funding, encouraging them to make staff cuts or even close altogether.  The Wolverhampton South East MP has written to ministers calling for the policy to be scrapped. 

 

In these uncertain times, nursery schools and preschools must find new ways to raise money to ensure that they can continue to provide their invaluable service to pre-schoolers and their families. 

 

Liam Donnison appointed Best Practice Network managing director

liam donnison

Liam Donnison has been appointed managing director of Best Practice Network, a provider of accredited training for leaders, teachers, support staff and governors in schools and early years settings.

 

He will focus on expanding BPN’s national delivery partnerships with schools, as well as school improvement work and opportunities to apply UK expertise overseas.

 

Liam joins BPN from Hong Kong, where he headed a team of 200 staff, delivering learning for 10,000 pre-school, primary, secondary and adult learners across 12 sites. 

 

“I’m delighted to have this chance to develop BPN‘s strengths in school partnerships, leadership and professional development,” he said. “What really strikes me

New funding to champion childminding

Thanks to a grant worth almost £400k, PACEY will be able to support many more registered childminders to consider how to make their small businesses more sustainable and whether they could deliver funded early education places.

 

PACEY knows that many registered childminders in England are currently deciding whether to deliver funded early education (including the extension to 30 hours) or not. Two questions are key to many childminders trying to make this important decision. Firstly how funded early education might impact on their long term business sustainability? Secondly how likely it is parents will choose a childminder to access their funded place?

 

Busy Bees training academy receives shining report from Ofsted inspectors

Busy Bees training academy

Busy Bees Training Academy is celebrating after receiving a glowing report following its latest OFSTED inspection. The Staffordshire-based training provider was inspected by OFSTED in February 2017 and received an ‘Outstanding’ report from inspectors across the board.

Busy Bees Training currently oversees over 1,500 childcare, management and catering apprenticeships, as well as 20 short courses delivered at each of its 12 venues throughout the country. It joins an elite group of training providers to achieve the accolade, as only four learning and skills providers achieved outstanding in the 2015/2016 academic year. 

Let your pupils get inspired by this year’s Kiddiwash Clean Hands Competition

 Kiddiwash

Nurseries and pre-schools across the UK have another chance to win a key piece of equipment to help their young pupils learn the importance of proper handwashing through the 2017 Kiddiwash Clean Hands Competition.  At the same time, it offers a fun activity for enthusiastic, young artists using their own clean hands as their inspiration.

 

Hoping to repeat the success of last year’s competition, TEAL Patents will award a free Kiddisynk to one winner and a Kiddiwash Xtra to two runners-up.  Kiddiwash is a range of portable, warm-water, hand washing basins specifically designed for use without mains plumbing – either water supply or drainage.  Simple to enter, the competition can be easily incorporated into a hand-washing lesson, making it both fun and memorable. 

72% of parents unaware that confidence development begins before 5 years old

Dance pre school

As a report reveals that 72% of parents are unaware that confidence development begins before the age of 5, Anne-Marie Martin, Founder of diddi dance, the much loved preschool dance classes, is urging parents to take action and help develop their child’s confidence from a young age with early interaction in activities.

Record numbers attend Childcare Expo London

Childcare Expo London

Thousands of early years practitioners descended upon London Olympia on 3 & 4 March for two days of breaking news, exclusive features and special guests. With a 30% increase in visitor numbers from 2016, exhibitors were welcomed with a surge that did not cease throughout the day. Stands for the show had sold out two weeks in advance, the first time this has happened, filling the room with a variety of resources and services specifically designed for the sector. Inspiring conversations and impressive sales taking place after the show had closed proved that the organisers of Childcare Expo truly outdone themselves this year.

S is for Starting School!

books

New Personalised Early-Learning Alphabet Book

Is your child starting school or nursery this year? If so mark this all-important milestone with a beautifully illustrated personalised Alphabet book from Itsyourstory. Not only a fantastic teaching aid which brings the alphabet to life by making them the star – but also a perfect keepsake which includes a personal message from you to the child at the front.

Building solutions manufacture and deliver new early learning facility

London Borough of Hounslow Council has appointed offsite building specialists, Actavo | Building Solutions, to manufacture and deliver a brand-new, modular, early learning facility to care for children aged 2-3 years. 

This new early year’s provision is being established as part of the Council’s statutory duty to provide sufficient free early learning and childcare places for disadvantaged 2-year-old children.  

The new, single-storey facility was manufactured and built by Actavo | Building Solutions in just 11 weeks. The new early year’s centre was completed at the end of December 2016.

Parents share their advice to new mums and dads in the just launched e-book

What the Parenting Manuals Don’t Tell You front cover

What the Parenting Manuals Don’t Tell You – from Bepanthen

To support new parents in the sometimes tough but wonderful transition into parenthood, nursery staff can direct new mums and dads to a brand new resource from leading nappy care ointment Bepanthen. What the Parenting Manuals Don’t Tell You, is a new e-book that gives an honest depiction of modern day parenting from those in the know. 

Developed in collaboration with parenting expert and midwife, Lisa Clegg, the tips that form the book were crowd-sourced from parents via social media and paired with humorous and warm-hearted sketches by illustrator and mother, Alyana Cazalet.

Cubetto, the smart learning toy that teaches young children ages 3-6 how to code

Cube to playset

School children as young as 3 are now mastering the universal language of coding with the help of a Montessori-inspired wooden robot powered by a coding language you can touch. Cubetto develops STEM skills through hands-on play and has become the coding standard for early years across 92 countries.

Cubetto is an education tool where learners can explore problem-solving, without the fear of failure, and inspires the younger generation to develop coding skills, an important 21st century literacy, essential for future creators, inventors and innovators. 

Pregnant women can test for leading cause of life threatening infection in newborn babies

Strepelle testing kit

Strepelle – a new DIY group B Strep test available in the UK

 

National charity Group B Strep Support is delighted to announce a partnership with healthcare company HiberGene Diagnostics to help pregnant women to test for group B Strep – the most common cause of life-threatening infection in newborn babies.

One in four pregnant women is unknowingly carrying group B Strep bacteria, which causes meningitis, sepsis or pneumonia in more than 500 newborn babies a year. 

On average, one newborn baby a week dies from group B Strep infection.

How will a 30-hour entitlement impact on parent partnerships?

Jo Verrill

Parent satisfaction with the quality of their relationships with nursery staff is high, as evidenced by continuous national benchmark research carried out by Ceeda on behalf of nurseries across the country. Here Dr Jo Verrill, Ceeda MD, shares the latest findings and explores how a 30 hour offer may bring about new challenges in building effective parent partnerships.

Measured across a range of questions from receiving a warm welcome to feeling involved, consulted and informed about their child’s progress, the average rating for this vital aspect of provision is 8.98 out of a possible 10.00, based on feedback from 9,034 surveys in the last twelve months. 

Supporting Children’s development is one of six new free online courses

adults and children running

Supporting Children’s development is one of six new free online courses developed by the Open University-managed Social Partnerships Network, for anyone looking to improve their skills and knowledge, move up in their career, or take a new direction. 

Supporting children’s development may be of particular interest to Teaching Assistants, Nursery Nurses, Nursery Assistants, other support staff in schools and nurseries, as well as childminders, parents and those considering a career working with children. It will help learners to develop a deeper understanding of children's development. Topics covered include the development and management of relationships, encouraging reading, behavioural management, special educational needs and the importance of reflective practice.