Early Years Seminar – 8th January 2018

The exhibition space for this seminar was developed and set up by our infant classroom practitioner R1 who is our messy and sensory play aficionado.

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Early Years Seminar – 14th December 2017

Group Supervision “Many brains are better than one”

Within my setting, I place a huge focus on developing practitioners as individuals; together we explore interests and personal projects, using coaching and solution-focused prompts to help staff progress and grow. But in researching effective CPD systems in August 2017 for a MA module, I came across a super document detailing group supervision practice within Scottish social work teams. It occurred to me that our staff all have their specialisms and areas of expertise – we should pool that wealth of knowledge more frequently than our 4 INSET days a year, we should facilitate solution-focused gatherings or mini forums on a regular basis. So, in addition to our staff’s normal 1:1s we are piloting group supervisions (6 groups of up to 5 practitioners – a small enough group to share their own challenges and offer their ideas, and not so many that more than one practitioner is absent from a classroom at a time) from December 2017.

Watch this space as the idea is developed!

“Outstanding” in all areas

Whilst I’ve always been staunch in my belief that hard work and continuous improvement doesn’t stop with an outstanding grade, it is still a delight to share that my setting received an outstanding grade in all areas last week!

I was particularly pleased by the inspector’s praise of my “next level” leadership and the impact of our staff development programme. The most important resources in Early Years are practitioners and I aim to ensure each and every one of mine gets all the coaching, nurturing and support they need to be exceptional!

Full Ofsted Report

Early Years Seminar – 7th November 2017

The superb exhibition space developed and set up by our Owl Class Team Leader J, focusing on exploring, investigating and understanding the wonderful world around us.

Communicating and celebrating diversity to champion community spirit

The Team Leader of my pre-school classroom has a lovely phrase which she has written on a poster in the entrance area of her class and features on one of the tables at the upcoming seminar exhibition:

We celebrate our diversity [but] we all sleep under the same sky.

The special topic for discussion this week has been light festivals worldwide and the children have been exploring the associated stories, eating tea by candlelight (a special event in itself!) and talking about their similarities and differences. I think the beauty of this phrase is that it acknowledges our differences but highlights our fundamental oneness. This sense of belonging as part of the lovely melting pot of the nursery community has been the key tenet of our staff discussions (and seminar presentations!) on what it means to uphold “British Values”. For us, it’s about eradicating isolation and fostering that sense of being part of the whole group, of being valued as individuals and of being “seen” and intrinsically understood.