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Childcare Works

Hempsall’s, Mott MacDonald and Action for Children have been awarded a two-year DfE contract to ensure settings and local authorities work together to create enough childcare to implement the 30 hours policy. The project, called Childcare Works, has the aim of achieving the delivery of childcare for two- three- and four-year-olds in ways in which high-quality childcare is accessible, flexible and affordable. In doing so, Childcare Works will work directly with providers, local authority early years teams, and central government. We will be signposting you to resources as they become available on the Childcare Works website to be launched later this year.

For now please look at the Events section for Childcare Works 30-hours LED events we are hosting in November and December as a part of this project.


Centre for Research in Early Childhood

Centre for Research in Early Childhood (CREC) are currently enrolling for their brand new postgraduate module, Physical Activity in Early Childhood. Designed for all those working with children from birth to 7 years old, this module takes a look at the young developing child through the lens of movement, physical activity and sport. It is designed to support practitioners to combine their creativity, critical reflection, knowledge and experience, in order to improve outcomes for children, develop their own practice and grow as professionals. To learn more and enrol for January cohort please click here.


Family Action

Free resources

On the Learning Exchange you can find a variety of free templates, guides, case studies and tip sheets to support your setting to:

  • set up wraparound provision on a school site (eg after-school, breakfast and holiday clubs)
  • develop more inclusive childcare practices for 0-5s with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

The Learning Exchange website, which is managed by Family Action, is being funded by the Department for Education (DfE) until March 2017. 

Early years and schools services

Family Action delivers a wide range of programmes and services within the early years and schools and education sectors, as well as offering open workshops and in-house training programmes across the country (e.g. mental health first aid, child protection for designated safeguarding leads).

Keep in touch


National Day Nurseries Association

Play and Learn with the Teletubbies!

All week, nurseries across the UK and internationally have been getting involved in NDNA’s Play and Learn with the Teletubbies activity week. Free activity guides are available to download from the NDNA website, plus other resources including a free online course for nursery practitioners.

Next week is Play and Learn with the Teletubbies parents’ week. NDNA is encouraging nurseries to interact with parents and encourage home learning when watching educational television shows with their children, such as the new Teletubbies series.  Parents can download their activity guide and resources – and access their free online interactive guide – from the NDNA website.

Find out more here


National Portage Association (NPA)

Would you like to develop your skills, knowledge and confidence to support children with SEND and their families? The NPA provide training and support to the early years workforce to develop Portage practice.

Portage Workshop – A Small Steps Approach to Learning for Children with SEND

Recently updated to support the implementation of Portage principles within early years settings.

If you are interested in accessing the training or developing Portage in your area please contact

[email protected] (South)

[email protected] (North & Midlands)

Further information can also be found here


The NPA Stamp of Approval Scheme

This award is available to early years settings (including childminders and foster carers) whose staff have completed the Portage Workshop and demonstrate that they deliver high quality, inclusive early years education, based on the Portage model and Portage principles.

For criteria and application information visit the Portage Support Hub


Childcare Works 30-hours special: Learn, Explore, Debate Event

Childcare Works has created a special programme of LED events for providers focusing on 30-hours.

The events will be delivered in partnership with the Foundation Years Team at Action for Children.

The audience for these events is all types of early years and childcare providers including chains, children’s centres, schools, childminders and local authority officers working with providers, business support officers, and partner roles in other organisations.

Aims and objectives:

  • Learn 10 useful steps to support your planning for the extended entitlement
  • Explore the policy, the entitlement and flexibility in the suggested delivery model
  • Debate and discuss the opportunities and challenges in the extended entitlement
  • Explore business models, tools and techniques which will support your planning and long term sustainability
  • Learn from how flexibility and the extended hours are being offered now
  • Debate and discuss your initial thinking
  • Learn information to help develop your implementation plan

For more information and to book your place please follow the appropriate link below:

London 21st November

Birmingham 23rd November

Leeds 24th November

Manchester 28th November

Taunton 30th November

Newcastle 5th December


National Day Nurseries Association

NDNA regularly host training events across the UK. Upcoming courses throughout November include:

  • 30 Hours Workshop – Warrington
  • Advanced Safeguarding – Derby, Wednesbury, Durham and  Taunton
  • Working with Babies – Bristol and Poole
  • Developing Outstanding Practice – Huddersfield
  • Quality Teaching in Early Years – Bristol

Find out more and book here.


National Literacy Trust

Talk To Your Baby Conference 2017: Early Language in a Connected World

The National Literacy Trust’s hugely successful early years conference is back for its 13th year on 13 March 2017 at London Metropolitan University. Renowned for its expert reflection on policy, research and practice, Talk To Your Baby attracts a wide range of delegates from different disciplines across the sector.

The conference focuses on translating research into practice, and this year will highlight the importance of influences on early language development in pre-schoolers, particularly ages birth to three.

Specialist practitioners and academics will discuss the impact of three key areas on early talk: child to parent interaction, practice in settings, and factors in the wider community including public health and technology.

Chaired by Jean Gross CBE and with speakers from local government, academia and neonatal public health, the conference offers invaluable collaboration opportunities. This is why delegates return year after year to reflect, share insight and be inspired.

Together we can improve the language and literacy outcomes of children from birth to five.

Find out more and book your place now for an early bird price of £195.


Sightlines Initiative

A Tangled Web: conference & seminar in dialogue with Reggio

University of Greenwich, London 26-27 November, 2016

How can educators:

  • Actually create places for learning in many expressive languages?
  • Learn how and when a new expressive language can be brought into children’s enquiries?
  • Explore expressive languages themselves?
  • Show the outside world how this interwoven learning practice works?

Both days will feature educators from Reggio Emilia & their work. The first day will be a presentation style conference, with lots of time given to the detailed exploration of enquiry projects; the second day will focus, seminar-style, on exploring participants’ issues in the development of their educational practice, with the opportunity for detailed exchange with our Reggio Emilian colleague.

For more information and booking a place, please go here.


Reggio Emilia Study Week 2017

Sunday 2nd – Friday 7th April 2017

Loris Malaguzzi International Centre, Reggio Emilia, Italy.

A one-week study visit to learn about and be inspired by the world renowned educational approach of the preschools and infant toddler centres of Reggio Emilia.

This course will explore the key principles underpinning the Reggio approach to early childhood education including:

  • History and background
  • Creativity and expressive languages of children
  • Listening to children
  • The environment as ‘the third teacher’
  • Parents as partners
  • Democratic citizenship
  • Children as the subjects of rights
  • Children and educators as researchers
  • Observation, interpretation, documentation
  • Making learning visible
  • Professional dialogue

For more information visit us here.

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