Self-regulation in the EYFS: Unfit for Purpose. I have been writing and talking about the fundamental importance of understanding self-regulation (SR) and the neuroscience of early brain development for well over a decade and in this time, I am disappointed to have not seen it feature in early years (EY) qualifications or training as mandatory practice. However, recently, things have changed and SR (which simply put, is the individual’s ability to manage big emotions and their resulting behaviours and to return to a state of calm) has become the ‘’buzzword’’ in the EY sector. ‘What’s the problem?’ you may well ask. Based on my observations, a few key issues come to mind including the proliferation of unscrupulous consultants who have … Read More
I hope that’s not a gun!
When I first trained to teach in Early Years, gun play was definitely off limits. We were told that there should be a zero tolerance to it as it encouraged children to be rough and aggressive. Any sign of a child wielding any thing that might have even been slightly mistaken for a gun had to be dealt with quickly and sternly. I remember being left worth the feeling that if I ignored this behavior then I would be turning all of my gun making children into thugs in later life. It occurred to me after a few years that no matter what sort of cohort the children were, no matter which school I was teaching in, superhero and weapon … Read More
How to Write Like a Jedi – Star Wars Inspiration!
As we see the return of Star Wars to the cinema – don’t miss your chance to motivate your children with a bit of Jedi Writing! Walt Disney Company I came up with Jedi Writing as a ‘boy heavy’ reception class teacher in the early 1990’s when Star Wars was ‘big news’ in my class. The good thing about it is that although Jedi’s where my initial inspiration you can apply the principle to any interest whatsoever. The key to any successful learning is of course engagement so make sure however you choose to ‘dress’ your talk handwriting practice has them jumping up and down with excitement and not hiding under the water tray. Although it was born out of … Read More
Good EYFS Display? Try a ‘Scrapbook’ approach.
I am often asked what 'good' EYFS display should look like. My answer is usually that it is easier to say what a 'not so good' display looks like and work backwards from there! When I was an NQT I spent HOURS on my displays. Every board a different colour, every boarder picked for maximum contrast! Foil backed boards with tinsel boarders, swags, drapes, fairy lights – you name it I had it (with knobs on)! I very much saw my display as being an obvious judgement of me and my abilities as a teacher rather than a mechanism to inspire, motivate and teach my children. Over time and with experience my view has drastically changed an I have become … Read More
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