Hello everyone, welcome to the February newsletter. It's a busy one this month!
We are happy to announce another big update to our Android app!
Version 5.0 brings you reference material for staff using the new EYFS, access to the Care Diary for relatives, and the Online Register beta (more on this last one further down). Lots of smaller quality-of-life, security, and performance improvements are also included in this update. It will be slowly rolling out to all Android users over the next week.
Please note, this Tapestry app version is the last one where we fully support Android devices running below Android 8. App updates will still be available to those users, but we can no longer address any specific issues for these devices. You can check your Android version within your device’s settings.
Online Register (beta)
We are pleased to announce another development in our ongoing management system – Online Register (beta) is now available for you all to use.
Located within the “Booking” feature, Online Register will show you the children you are expecting based on the regular schedules, extra bookings and absences you’ve added in the Booking section, and allows you to easily mark them in, out, or absent.
You’ll also be able to:
- See the notes you’ve made on the bookings and add additional ones.
- Mark additional, unexpected, children in.
- Filter and sort the children list.
- Check past registers.
- Export any of your registers to PDF for your records.
The reason we are releasing this as a “beta” is because you may see some tweaks over the next few months - most notably the Online Register becoming available on both our apps. As mentioned above, it is available on the most recent version of the Android app, but we are still working on iOS.
We also have a little extra enhancement for you. Staff and relatives can now edit their own comments on Observations, Memos, and Reflections - helpful for fixing any typos! The original comment will be recorded in each account’s History section, so managers can still see the original comment if necessary.
Mckie Mastery Phonics
For any setting who use Mckie Mastery Phonics, there is now a pre-made CSV file you can upload to our Bespoke Frameworks feature if you’d like to start assessing with it on your Tapestry account. You can contact them directly for access to this CSV.
We have two new articles on our info site this month:
- “Are Observations Still Important in the Early Years?” This article is an amalgamation of information from statutory and non-statutory guidance, quotes from early years experts, and our own reflections on the importance of observations.
- “A Q&A with Professor Eunice Lumsden.” In this written interview, Professor Eunice Lumsden discusses, among other things, inclusion & diversity; holistic safeguarding; and the qualities of an early years educator.
- And in case you missed it - “How to Make Assessment More Inclusive.” This article was originally published by TES in October last year but deserves revisiting. Written by our resident SEND advisor Stephen Kilgour, it discusses inclusivity in the context of settings curating their own assessment approaches.
Toddlers, Tech and Talk
Led by Professor Rosie Flewitt, Manchester Metropolitan University is collaborating with the universities of Lancaster, Queen’s Belfast, Strathclyde and Swansea on a project researching how the home lives of children aged three and under intersect with digital technologies in diverse families in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. Through survey research, interviews and innovative participatory research methods, the project will generate new understandings of contemporary home learning environments, and generate guidance for parents and educators on creative and fun ways to make the most of the early learning opportunities offered by digital media. You can read more about the project here.
The research team need your help to disseminate the survey, so if you are able to, please share the survey link with parents at your setting. If you are the parent of a child aged 0-36 months, then please also complete the survey yourself 😊. The survey is available in English, Arabic, Bengali, Chinese, Farsi, French, Gujurati, Polish, Panjabi, Romanian, Ukrainian, Urdu and Welsh. This forum post includes a poster in English which you might display in your setting. If you would like more information about the poster, as well as posters in languages other than English, or if you have any questions about the study, please email Rosie, email@example.com
And finally … Happy Birthday to the FSF!
February 14th 2023 marked the Foundation Stage Forum’s 20th birthday!
Despite the myriad changes in the sector over the past 20 years, the Forum remains the place it always was - a space for the supportive network of education professionals to discuss any and all things: to help, to share and to connect.
To mark the occasion, we have opened a new forum thread for you to come and share your most positive experiences working with children over the past 20 years.
We are also planning some exciting changes to the FSF in the future, so watch this space.