Dough Gym Week – Creating a Dough Gym

abc doesDough Gym14 Comments

Now that you have assessed your children in relation to their gross and fine motor dexterity, you can set up your Dough Gym. What is Dough Gym? Dough Gym is a gym for children where you work out with dough – Simple! Dough Gym is a specific daily intervention – If it is going to have impact it has to be regular and consistent. Dough Gym is directly linked to assessment and attainment. Dough Gym is exclusive – You need to make the children who need this intervention feel special and chosen for all of the right reasons, not just because they are failing. I usually work with a maximum of 8 children, not a whole group. It is not … Read More

Café Culture and the not so humble snack…

abc doesChild Initiated Learning, Continuous Provision, Environment, Role Play, Talk11 Comments

Like with every area of your provision, it is worth asking the question 'what is snack for?' before you start to plan for it. At it most basic level, snack is an opportunity for young children, who burn lots of energy in their play and exploration of your environment, to re-fuel. But, in truth there is SO much more that snack could and should be than that. At best it can offer some brilliant leaning opportunities. At worst it is a bag of apples and some cartons of milk dumped on a table. Halton Lodge have a small but perfectly formed snack area with a 'Have a go if you want to' waiting area with leveled challenges in it There … Read More

Making Snow…and other Early Years Practice.

abc doesChild Initiated Learning, Continuous Provision, Planning and Assessment2 Comments

Just thought you might like to share some of the sorts of practice that I have been looking at over the past couple of weeks. Last week I popped to Coventry to work with Nicki  and the Early Years team at Joseph Cash Primary school.  The school has 60 Reception children who work in one open plan space (with a small work room next to the loos!) and a Nursery class who have their own space but share an outside area. I was working with Nicki on the further implementation of objective led planning and looking at their current systems for recording all of their other bits of planning – plus a bit of outdoor evaluation thrown in for good … Read More

Judging Attainment in Reception

abc doesBoys Learning, Child Initiated Learning, Continuous Provision, Creativity, Environment, Mark Making, Phonics, Planning and Assessment10 Comments

When I am not writing or delivering conferences I spend the rest of my time working in a wide variety of EYFS settings. Sometimes it is just a one off visit to do an audit of practice and provision or to help with a specific issue like mark making or outdoor. But there are some very lucky settings who have the 'pleasure' of repeat ABC visits. One of those is Halton Lodge Primary who I 'bother' on a fairly regular basis. I was originally invited by Darren when he took over as the new Head and identified EYFS as an area for his own professional development.  We have done some joint observations (much to the sheer joy of the EYFS … Read More