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More Free Flow? Over My Dead Body!


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Please can anyone help. I am the Nursery teacher and am in my first year of the job. We have 39 chn. and 3 staff. As the year has gone on, I feel that we have done really well with the children and that they are now ready to move from our current 50-50 adult led and C.I. to more of a free flow so that they can direct their own learning more.

One of our staff has been in Nursery for years and was told by HT that she was to help me and "show me the ropes". However, we have a clash of philosophies as she harks back to the great days of lots of colouring in and sorting by colour and threading- nothing wrong with these as part of a varied diet, but she would like more of them. When I suggested more free flow, she more or less said the title of my post.

Has anyone got any ideas, suggestions, experience of how I can win her round? can anyone recommend any good articles I could read to back my instincts? Any help appreaciated.

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I wonder would the observations of your current childrens free flow development compared to adult led development show the benefits of free flow compared to adult led?

 

Ask her would she prefer A or B

A: to be sent to a training course on a subject that she was particularly interested, and would benefit her professional development at the moment or

 

B: to a course that would be boring for her, totally presented by powerpoint with little interaction allowed, maybe an end assessment that shows she only learnt specific aims and objectives, but she left wanting to ask loads of questions, know more and had started new thoughts which were then left unchallenged through the presenters lack of time and working to his/her own agenda..... :o

 

I am not suggesting that all AI time with children is as bad as option B xD

 

Peggy

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Hi Mozart,

difficult one that but you probably need to speak to your mentor and possibly to the head teacher for help and advice. Do not be confrontational. You could look at the Ofsted guidelines and EYFS for more specific help too.

 

Meanwhile I am moving this to a more appropriate forum area as you are school based.

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I'm in a pre-school setting but I think this a common problem. I am hoping that the EYFS training will help bring others on board. Delve into the EYFS CD rom - there's loads of research on there such as

 

Effective practice: Play and Exploration

 

Effective practice: Active Learning

 

On a course I went on recently, with pre-school settings and reception teachers it was suggested that '70% of the Foundation Stage curriculum requires independant learning opportunites, planned opportunities which are child initiated with sensitive intervention from an adult'.

 

Good luck!

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Thanks Beau- another superb link saved into favourites. That's what it should be all about sharing good practise for the benefit of our children.

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Hi Mozart. Good advice already, ask for support from your head, suggest what you would like to do (if you have some concrete ideas), then arrange for a time to sit down with your TAs and discuss it with them.

Acknowledge that they have a wealth of experience and have helped you to settle in to your role. Also that they may have some concerns, get them to give you an idea of exactly what concerns them. Show them the EYFS if they haven't seen it yet, and how free flow meets the demands of that. Ask them how they would meet the EYFS requirements especially for following children interests. Ask them what they have seen in the way of benefits to what you have done so far. Suggest ways of moving towards what you would like to achieve, slowly if necessary (as you are already doing), so that by September you have the balance you are looking for ready for the new cohort. Agree to review anything new you put into place, so that your staff don't feel its cast into stone, and be prepared to listen to their concerns (even if you don't agree). Some people don't like change, and sometimes you have to make changes slowly rather than quickly. All of this is much easier to do with the Heads backing of course.

 

Good luck with it all.

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glad it is not just me!

 

although my staff are all on borad, it is the paretns who i am having trouble with! doing inof evening next week, to inform them all!

 

they want worksheets and sitting and teaching (we are a playgroup!)

 

aarrgghhh

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