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The Foundation Stage Forum September Newsletter 2020

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Welcome to the September FSF newsletter. 

New beginnings, new normal. The new pencil case September-y feeling is different this year. Uncertainty hangs over every decision, every one way system in every corridor, every 'bubble', every playground 'zone', every risk assessed resource. But nothing brings you back into the moment like children, reminding you that real life is what happens when they arrive! 

The narrative around education continues to be challenging.  There are growing concerns about the widening attainment gap, and a survey by the Early Years Alliance indicates that parents of young children feel more could and should be done to support them during the pandemic. 

The big news in the Early Years is the publication of the new Development Matters. This is a non-statutory document to support the new EYFS Framework, which is being used by early adopter schools this year, and by all early years providers and schools from September 2021. There is much discussion about the content and purpose of the new Development Matters. While that continues, those working with children in settings and Reception classes are thinking about how to use the new guidance to inform their practice and understanding of their children's learning journeys, remembering that it is a map to help them find their way and not a set of rules that must be followed. 

Our understanding of racism and anti-racism in our society and our pedagogy requires deep reflection. The Black Curriculum is a social enterprise founded by young people in 2019 to provide a Black British History curriculum in the UK. They offer training and a curriculum for KS2 (and beyond) teachers and children with the aim of supporting the teaching of Black History all year round, and recently delivered their first training to over 100 educators online.

And finally, for something beautiful and thought-provoking, photographer Slater King has shared his 'photo essay' focusing on nursery educators. 

Wishing you a happy September-y feeling. 



New Content

In the Primary Section of the FSF this month we have Jack's article debating the pros and cons of homework - have you done yours? In the Early Years section, Jenny Barber discusses CPD in the 'new normal' and our SEND Advisor Stephen shares the Play and Development Branch Map he has designed to inform educators about the stages of play in a typically developing child. 

The education team have been chatting with so many interesting and insightful guests on the FSF podcasts. We have a bit of an outdoors theme this month.  Storyteller Chris Holland joined us to talk about the learning that happens when adults and children connect with Nature. Greg Bottrill, author of 'Can I go and play now?' and 'School and the magic of children' discussed the wonder of outdoor learning and 'living a story' on Adventure Island. And Bridgit Brown from Pebbles Childcare joined us for a chat about the freedom of learning with children as a childminder and the rich experiences of Beach School. 

We have a few discussion spaces on the Forum for sharing ideas about the new Development Matters. Do join in with the professional conversations there, offering advice, wisdom and asking questions. If you're feeling a bit lost about the new guidance you might want to read our Coffee Break Going on a Road Trip with the new Development Matters

Don't forget if you like your information to be visual, you can check out the Tapestry Youtube channel where you'll find some video clips from our podcasts and lots of support if you use Tapestry in your setting. 




From The Forum

New ideas?

With the continued pressure on funding we continue to rely on fundraising to pay for extras...

New Development Matters - introductory session

This forum area is to discuss the content of the new DMs and how teachers and practitioners can use the guidance to provide the very best possible care and education for their children.

Edited by Jules

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