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The Foundation Stage Forum November Newsletter 2020

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Welcome to the November FSF newsletter.

At the time of writing this we are beginning a new national lockdown in England, although many parts of the UK have been under tighter restrictions for a while. Schools and settings remain open and on the frontline supporting children and families, not just with teaching and learning but with emotional and practical support too. Here at the FSF we thank you for all the work you do everyday to improve the lives of our children. 

This week Marcus Rashford acknowledged the difference a new winter grant scheme announced by the Government will make to nearly 1.7 million children, including help with food and bills for families. The young footballer continues to campaign against food poverty with his child food poverty taskforce. Marcus Rashford's campaign resonates with the United Nations message -  for every child, every right. This message is amplified by World Children’s Day on 20th November, held every year to promote togetherness and improve children’s welfare. 

The 16th to the 20th of November is World Nursery Rhyme week. First held in 2013, it promotes the value of nursery rhymes in child development, and over 4 million children from 106 countries have taken part since the initiative began. Families have their own traditional songs and rhymes representing their culture and story, and sharing these provides a rich learning opportunity for all children. 

If you are an early years practitioner, you will be interested in reading Dr Julian Grenier's The Revised Early Years Foundation Stage: Principles into Practice. This is an independently written guidance designed to support practitioners, teachers and settings in understanding and implementing the new Development Matters.

November is an important month in both the Sikh and the Hindu year. Sikhs around the world will be celebrating Guru Nanak Dev Ji Gurpurab, Guru Nanak’s birthday and Hindus share in Diwali, the festival of lights. We send warmest wishes to the Sikh community and to the Hindu community as they observe these special times while coping with the pandemic restrictions.

Wishing you all a happy and safe November. 


New Content

On the FSF this month we included a Coffee Break write up of the findings of the survey we carried out recently.  These findings were also reported in an article in Nursery Management Today.  Thank you to everyone who took part. 

As always there are new articles for you. We have a piece by Liz Pemberton – How do I talk about race with children in the early years setting?; Super Manny Joss Cambridge-Simmons shares his story; and The Secret SENCo looks back at the first lockdown and forwards into the future, thinking about how she will be supporting children with special educational needs in her school.

Helen is writing a series about Observation, and you can find the first couple of articles in our Observation Hub section

There are conversations happening about the new DMs on the Forum - this is a good one to start with. If you have read an article on the FSF, we'd love to hear what you think about it. You can add your thoughts in the comment box below each article. We often set up a dedicated forum thread for an article too. 

We have some new podcasts: Joss Cambridge-Simmons joined us to talk about being a man working in the childcare sector; Wendy Scott, President of TACTYC and Early Years representative on the board of NAPE shared her thoughts on working with families and how the early years can transform lives; Doreen Barton (Sounique Child) chatted with us about childminding; and Dr Julian Grenier, Gill Jones and Wendy Ratcliff answered questions on the role of assessment and what to say to your SLT. This is the one to listen to if you are an Early Adopter this year. 

There have been some new features added to Tapestry this month. Child Login allows you to enable your Tapestry account so children can log in from specific computers at your setting and/or allow them to log in from home. Children can then access the child-friendly version of Tapestry to see observations that have been made for them and upload their own. The beta version is now available, and you can find out more about Child Login on Tapestry's main tutorials page and in this article on Tapestry.info. Tapestry are really interested to hear feedback about Child Login, so do get in touch by emailing customer.service@eyfs.info.

The New Development Matters are now available on Tapestry. We have responded to the move away from collecting and analysing data and to the renewed focus on careful curriculum design, depth of learning, and an educator’s knowledge of each child. You can read more about the thinking behind how Tapestry have added the new Development Matters here and check out some tutorials here.

Thank you to everyone who comes to the FSF, whether to read articles, follow threads about practice and policy, or to join in conversations. We appreciate you all. 

From The Forum

Outdoor Provision

Our outdoor area is a large tarmac area.

Theories on CPD in Practice

I'm a level 3 practitioner and for a course I'm required to find out other practitioners opinions and theories on CPD and how it all actually works in practice for you all.

Edited by Jules

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