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What to Expect, When? Guide for Parents

The purpose of this new EYFS resource is to help parents/carers find out more about how their child is learning and developing during their first five years, in relation to the EYFS. Children develop more rapidly during the first five years of their lives than at any other time. This booklet has been written to help you as a parent know what to expect during these vitally important years by focusing on the seven areas of learning and development which are covered in the EYFS.


Fundamental British Values in the Early Years

At the recent Learn Explore Debate events (March 2015) we heard a lot of queries about how providers should be interpreting Fundamental British Values in the early years and how that will be reflected by Ofsted in inspection. Our feedback noted that many of you would welcome further clarity and guidance on what British Values means in the early years to reduce misinterpretation and confusion.

We have now produced this document with examples to demonstrate what this means in practice.


Early Years Pupil Premium Case Studies

4Children, in their strategic role for early years and childcare through The Children’s Partnership were asked by the Department for Education to launch a call for evidence on the Early Years Pupil Premium, seeking for providers to identify and share good practice around meeting the needs of disadvantaged children and improving outcomes. This call for evidence ran throughout November and December 2014 and resulted in a number case studies and examples which can be accessed here.


Fatherhood Institute

Family Foundations

The birth of a new baby is a time of immense change for a couple, and the transition into parenthood and the impact it has on their relationship can be overlooked through universal services. Family Foundations gives expectant parents the tools to take care of their relationship and their parenting team.

The Fatherhood Institute  is proud to be the only agency licensed to deliver the programme in the UK.

Family Foundations is a highly evidenced based parenting programme, delivered over 7 session (pre and post natal) programme for first time mothers and fathers. In families who have taken part in FF there have been significant impacts on:

  • Postnatal depression
  • Improving parenting sensitivity and warmth
  • Decreasing harsh parenting
  • Fostering positive couple relations
  • Establishing positive child self-regulation

For more information, visit the website, find us in the EIF guidebook or email


Family Action – Childcare in Schools

Developing sustainable and inclusive childcare on a school site

Visit the Learning Exchange website for numerous free templates, top tips, news articles and useful links to help you develop school-based childcare provision.

For example:

  • Look at our new section offering information and ideas about developing inclusion for children with SEND in school-based childcare and holiday activities.
  • Look at our new web section on developing school-based provision for 2 year olds.
  • Visit our Learning Exchange Facebook page for training suggestions, services, ideas, events and other information related to school-based childcare and holiday activities for children with SEND, particularly in the North West.
  • Find out how other schools approach school-based childcare.
  • Sign up to our latest Learning Exchange e-bulletin.
  • Benchmark the Learning Exchange Ideas Box for inclusive after-school activity ideas.


Family and Childcare Trust

Parent Champion case study films

At the recent Family and Childcare Trust Parent Champions Conference three new case study films were launched, showing how local use of the Parent Champions model has diversified to meet various community needs.  The Carlisle film shows its work with health visitors, linking with parents straight after childbirth.  The Leeds one shows its work on housing estates using parents from their local tenants parenting programmes becoming Parent Champions.  The Wandsworth film shows how their scheme has resulted in a large number of additional parents registering onto the local Disabled Children’s Register, and promotes a Wand card which helps local services and businesses be more family friendly for children with SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities).  You can view the films here.


National Literacy Trust

Children, who are falling behind their peers in understanding spoken language in the lead up to starting school, can catch up, thanks to a new early year’s literacy scheme – Early Words Together. An independent evaluation of the National Literacy Trust two-year pilot programme published 24/3 also shows that 86% of parents who took part, now talk more with their preschool children, which will have a big impact on their school readiness and ongoing attainment. You can read more about the project here.


Contact a Family

Here at Contact a Family we have launched our ‘Love DLA Month’ as part of our ongoing ‘Counting the Cost’ campaign.  Contact a Family want to make sure that families are not missing out on millions of pounds of extra income because they do not claim Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for children.

Throughout March we will be dispelling some commonly myths about DLA based on our research with families, and highlighting the real difference that DLA can make to the lives of families. For example, 1 in 4 surveyed families are not claiming DLA because they think their child needs a diagnosis. This is not true.

Families have been getting involved via our Facebook and Twitter pages, posting ‘selfies’ and sharing their reasons why they love DLA. If you would like more information on DLA, and to find out if your family is missing out, call the Contact a Family free helpline on 0808 808 3555


Early Education

Our guidance on the six baseline assessment schemes is now available to download for free including a handy guide to the principles of assessment in the EYFS.

Our summer term training programme is now online, including courses in April on British Values and the Early Years from Vicky Hutchin and Self-Regulation to Support Early Thinking and Learning from Marion Dowling.

Booking is also open for our annual national conference Explore, Discover, Create which will take place in Plymouth on 12-13 June with keynote speakers Peter Moss and John Siraj-Blatchford, plus a choice of workshops and visits to local beacon settings.

We’re supporting the next generation of early years practitioners by offering free membership to students if their college or university is a group member of Early Education.  This includes access to online resources such as back copies of our Journal, and free attendance at many local branch meetings.  Find out more on how to sign up.


Education Endowment Foundation

Early Years Pupil Premium Toolkit

The Education Endowment Foundation has published a toolkit for providers to gain the maximum benefits from the Early Years Pupil Premium. The toolkit aims to capture the maximum possible benefit from the Premium by focusing efforts where it will make the most difference. The toolkit can be accessed here.


Institute of Education


The Sustained Shared Thinking and Emotional Well-being (SSTEW) is an exciting new scale which considers practice that supports children in developing skills in sustained shared thinking and emotional well-being, as well as developing strong relationships, effective communication and aspects of self regulation. It is designed to be used for research, self-evaluation, and improvement, audit and regulation by the sector – for the sector.  Using the SSTEW Scale alongside other environmental scales gives a more complete picture of what high quality early childhood education and care can look like. It is aspirational in that it considers high quality pedagogy and practice. The SSTEW scale can be ordered from this link.



Information Sharing – Preparation for the Integrated Review

Regional seminars: Leeds – 14th May, London – 19th May

‘The Integrated Review at Age Two’, due to come in by September 2015, is designed to bring together the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Progress Check at age two with the Healthy Child Programme (HCP) 2 – 2 ½ year health and development review, into an integrated process.

With September fast approaching, these important seminars ask the question ‘How can we prepare for the Integrated Review?’

These seminars will demonstrate the new information sharing tools available and also explore;

  • Updates regarding the Integrated Review and Information Sharing
  • Why integration is so crucial
  • How an Integrated Review can support Early Identification – with case studies from Local Authorities

Don’t miss the unique opportunity to hear  first-hand the work other local authorities are doing and the systems they are developing to share information, to engage not just the work force, but also parents – inviting, identifying and involving them all in a holistic process.

Book your place here

You can also register your interest by emailing [email protected]


NLH Partnership

Workshop: Effectively tracking Children’s Centre impacts

Tuesday 28th April 2015 – BVSC, 138 Digbeth, Birmingham B5 6DR

Effectively tracking the impacts of Children’s Centre work for children and families is an increasingly important part of the assessment of Children’s Centres’ performance, and Ofsted requires Centres to provide high quality impact ‘tracking’ evidence in order to gain a ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ grade. This workshop focuses on the various types of ‘tracking’ outlined in the latest Ofsted guidance, to provide attendees with a clear understanding of how to develop and implement effective systems and processes for tracking Children’s Centre impacts. Attendees leave the workshop with a thorough understanding of how to effectively meet key tracking requirements.

For more information email [email protected], or call 0207 7292206.