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The Foundation Stage Forum EYFS newsletter October 2019

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October has arrived and you will already be well into the new academic year! The leaves are beginning to crunch underfoot, new routines are being established, new relationships are forming with children, families and staff, and the important business of learning through play is well underway. Children will be beginning their learning journeys with you, or continuing their explorations of awe and wonder at your settings. 

Since our last newsletter we have had a number of changes of Minister! New Early Years Minister Kemi Badenoch's maternity leave was covered by Michelle Donelan, and then the Early Years portfolio was added to Nick Gibb's remit as Minister of State at the Department of Education. We're not sure how much Mr Gibb knows about early years education, but you can read a list of the things we think he should be aware of in a letter from FSF and Tapestry's Jules in the 30th September edition of Nursery World - including some wise clothing advice for when he visits early years settings, which we encourage him to do a lot! 

Ofsted Inspections are under way using the new framework, and we have noticed words that encourage reflective practice appearing in the reports - review, revise, self-evaluation. Helen is busy reading a vast amount of them so we can keep us and you up to date! In addition, some Reception classes will have been involved in the Baseline pilot and we will be watching with interest to see what the feedback is from this.

MITEY held a conference in September to celebrate and support men in the early years. The GenderEYE project at Lancaster University and the Fatherhood Institute have a survey to help evidence why men are not entering the early years sector. You can find out more from the Early Years Alliance and from the MITEY website. 

We'd also like to congratulate Helen Moylett for her Nursery World Lifetime Achievement award







New Content

We have made a couple of changes here at the FSF and Tapestry HQ, and we have had a celebration too! 

We are introducing a new Coffee Break item - short and sweet, updated regularly on the home page for you to dip into whenever you have a moment.

We also have some new articles for you: Jen Colwell has written two pieces, The Process of Reflective Practice and Reflective Practice: Research Methods, and Jenny Barber has written about how our knowledge of child development can inform our approach to intent, implementation and impact. 

We will be delivering your FSF Newsletters on a monthly basis from now on, so watch out for them around the first week of each month.  

We are very excited to announce that Tapestry has launched a new feature called Reflections! This is designed to support you in your daily reflective practice, offering a place to record and gather your thoughts, and a way to evidence and follow your reflective journey. If you are using Tapestry, you can enable it via the Control Panel > Settings > Reflections. 

And finally - we'd like to wish Tapestry a very happy 7th Birthday! Tapestry sold its first package on 1st October 2012, and now serves 17,000 settings in the UK and around the world. 

Lucy Price, Nursery Director at Woodentots Nursery and one of the very first settings to use Tapestry said:image.png

“Tapestry has really evolved over the seven years we have been using it. We first decided to use Tapestry to enhance the communication between the setting and parents. We are based on a military establishment with as many as 50% of parents deployed away from home, so Tapestry has enabled us to achieve a much higher level of communication with these parents, particularly in relation to their child’s progress.”

Thank you Lucy! 

Tapestry Directors Helen and Steve made a little birthday clip to share the story of how Tapestry started, and grew to what it is today. Give it a watch, there are a few anecdotes in there! https://youtu.be/H6NhnvmQhRA

From The Forum

Best Fit

Can anyone clarify if, when assessing best fit against EY outcomes / DM,  you would select the band where children are currently working (ie they are emerging / developing) or where they are secure?


I have a child starting the nursery and the parents do not believe in any vaccinations for the child. Therefore the child has had no injections. What are everyone's thoughts or policies on this?

Light Table or Panel?

Does anyone have a light table or panel? We are thinking about buying one but would like to know if they are worth the money? If so can anyone make any recommendations on which to get and where from? 

Edited by Jules

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