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Comparitive Study For Foundation Degree


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Hello all, just wondering if you could give me a few suggestions...

Am doing foundation degree and in second year (feel all grown up now lol) and have to do 4000 word comparitive study comparing my setting (pre-school providing sessional care for 2.6-5 years based in 3 different environments- V Hall and two School halls) to another setting with a focus in mind. Others on my course are considering Forest Schools, comparing indoor/outdoor provision but feel these would not be suitable for my setting as the idea is to then implement something in own setting as result of research

Have spoken to leader and she has suggested looking at how pre-schools differentiate age groups (under 3/ over 3) as we currently have a lot of little ones with more due to start over the coming year and feel that whilst younger ones are needed to keep numbers (and therefore pennies) up they are hard work and having both age groups in one session takes a little quality away from either age group. We currently implement a policy of only 3 under-3's per session which helps but still feel we could do more i.e. provide a session for just under 3's and 'rising fives' about to start school but would have no idea how to implement this

any suggestions on this partic idea or any other you think may be good to research would be greatly appreciated as I am meant to visit other setting (wherever it may be) 3 times preferably before Christmas so want to get focus sorted before half term so I can research and find another suitable setting

Thanks, bex

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Hello bex, first, a warm welcome to the forum. :o

 

I think you have considered wisely not to do a comparison on something that you know you may find difficult to impliment.

 

There have been various discussions withinthe forum about whether to mix / seperate age groups within a setting. I think it would be useful, as your leader suggests to look at this, what are the benefits or not for mixed age groups. You could look at this in quite a few aspects, How it effects the adults, the children and the business. Your findings will also impact on your work situation which makes it 'real', therefore much more relevant to you personally, this in itself makes the assignment much more interesting and easier to learn from. xD

 

I would though, before deciding on this subject for comparison, do a little preliminary research to find out if there are other local settings which practice in both ways, ie: it would be difficult to compare if you don't find any settings who seperate the age groups.

 

Peggy

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Hi Bex! welcome to the forum you will find it really useful (and addictive!)

 

We have small groups with different ages as we find it aids both ages in terms of their self-confidence/mentoring and supporting younger children. We also have 3 year olds at after school club with children aged up to 11 year olds (not such a good idea!) and has had a detrimental effect on certain children who tend to observe what the older boys are up to and imitate!

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Hi Bex, welcome to the forum and I love your user name!

 

I would agree with peggy in that if you want to do a comparative study of settings you can actually visit, then you really need to know what they do in order for you to be to compare. This means doing some homework first, finding out about other settings you can get to (do you have local clusters or an advisory team you can ask?) and of cpourse a setting that is willing for you to conduct your study there. It may eb that your topic isnt viable in the time you have ad it would be a shame to decide on that particular topic only to find that you cant find a setting who's practice is very different and you have to go back to square one again..

 

let us know what you decide.

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Hi Bex and welcome to the Forum

 

Following on from mundia's words of wisdom, perhaps you could focus on one particular area of practice. A hot topic at the moment with the EYFS is the whole idea of learning journeys. Could you perhaps look at different ways of documenting children's learning? There is such a wide range of methods available, each with their own benefits and drawbacks.

 

Or how about the different ways groups handle transition into pre-school for the really young children?

 

I think keeing it as narrow as you can is a really good idea - otherwise you get lots of data and you might find it difficult to keep a handle on it!

 

Let us know what you decide!

 

Maz

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I also think your idea of looking at something you could implement in your setting is a good one. I don't know where you are but you would be welcome to visit our pre-school if you were anywhere close (between Bury and Bolton in Lancs) - well anyone would actually! Also if you were looking at managing different age groups there is a really interesting teachers TV piece on Swedish schools and their use of family groups. There was also a feature in Nursery World a few months back about a setting that works this way in the England. Following that I seem to remember there were a few settings wrote in to say they also worked that way.

 

We take a mix of over threes and under threes with our only limits being on the numbers we can accommodate within ratios. We give priority to the over 3s and then fill up with under 3s and usually have more under 3s in. We are lucky in that we have a number of small rooms off our main room and use these to separate the age groups for part of the morning. We also have rising fives session one day per week. If you would like to know anymore please let me know.

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Gosh wow thanks for so many responses so soon its ace! I can see that yes this forum is going to be addictive :S lol

I'm based in south Shropshire so that is a lovely offer thank you but think I would find it hard to find the time to travel to Bolton three times before Christmas, thank you again tho :)

An ex leader I am still in contact with is now assessing and has offered to try hook me up when have found something I feel happy with and yes there is a Montessori place near(ish) to me- actually visited it last term as they are likewise based in V hall but received an Outstanding from Ofsted and the lady leading there is going to be a tutor for course next term so already have a contact there that could call on

Ooh Sweden way sounds very interesting! Obviously the whole assignment has to be backed and supported by research and comparing to such a setting would give me a lot to talk about I hope! Could then introduce Steiner etc

We tried an afterschool club last year which failed quite miserably and sadly cannot honestly say I enjoyed it but that was due to lack of resources and consequently interest but hey-ho maybe one for just 'rising fives' would be of interest to parents, partic those working

Am going to write to my CCAT now and see what she suggests as she is also a tutor on foundation degree/eyps and is my mentor for course and always full of ideas...then I will check out Teachers TV for that video

Thanks again folks I feel quite inspired right now :)

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Hey just wanted some more ideas and thoughts please...

CCAT and mentor (one person) has suggested looking at motor skills and suggested Developmental Movement Play and effects it has on later development- has anyone heard of it? I have yet to research but will google soon and mentor is visiting Fri bringing some info on it. Local Montessori pre-school leader apparently does DMP so it has been suggested to contact her and then maybe use her setting to compare mine to which would be good (if she agrees of course) as they are in a village hall as are one of our settings so hopefully will be easier to implement at my pre-school... anyone have any thoughts??

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