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Context and principles for Early Years provision Argumentative

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  • Category: Childhood

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The EYFS is a statutory framework that sets the principles that all early years’ workers have a duty to meet. Play is a key way in which the curriculum is delivered and adults are expected to find fun ways for children to learn and develop. This framework is used from birth to five years old. Adults are able to set up activities knowing that they will be beneficial to the children and will be following the early year’s curriculum guidelines. They are able to make the experience of learning fun for the children. An adult working with children has a duty to keep a child safe while they play, they would need to check the play area for any safety hazards and supervise the children following the guidelines of the EYFS. The key features of the EYFS:

* The Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) sets the standards that all early years’ providers must meet to ensure that children learn and develop well and are kept healthy and safe.

* The Early Years Foundation Stage promotes teaching and learning to ensure children’s ‘school readiness’ and gives children the broad range of knowledge and skills that provide the right foundation for good future progress through school and life.

There have been several approaches to play that have had an influence on today’s early years play settings. There are many different views on how children would benefit most from play. I will be discussing philosophical, theoretical and other approaches that have had a successful effect on the early year’s framework. Maria Montessori 1870-1975 was a doctor and worked with children with learning disabilities. She believed that up until the age of six a child was capable of learning things quickly and more easily than the mind of an older person. She believed up until the age of six years old that a child has an ‘absorbent mind’ and that people should make good use of this time and that it should not be wasted.

She believed that a child should have the support and guidance of an adult during play and should have the right play equipment and environment in order for the child to learn best. She believed that play for young children had a purpose and that purpose was to learn. Today there are Montessori nursery schools which carry out all of her approaches to play. Her approach can also be seen within the general early year’s curricula. Today practitioners know and realise the importance of guiding and supporting a child during play and the importance of children learning every day skills such as doing up buttons and zipping their coat up.

Jean Piaget believed that child learn by physical, active activities and that a child’s cognitive ability was reflected in their play. He described the development of children in three different stages Mastery play (0-2), symbolic play (2-7) and play with rules (7-11).

He spent time watching children playing and noted that as a child developed the more complex the choice in play activities became, for example they started to create rules. He believed that this reflected on their cognitive ability and that it showed a high level of cognitive development. A Forest school believes that play should be integrated with playing outdoors during early education.

The idea is that a child’s overall holistic development would be increase by having freedom outdoors, developing confidence and social skills as well as developing physically. As recently there has been an upward trend of childhood obesity the early years curricula now requires that children must spend time outdoors and do physical activity. This links in to the approach of the forest school. Common Core of Skills and Knowledge

The Common Core of Skills and Knowledge for Early year’s practitioners set out the basic skills and knowledge for them and volunteers who works and has regular contact with children and young people. There are six key areas of skills and knowledge in the core and this provides an early year’s practitioner with certain guidelines and rules to follow. These six areas are:

* Effective communication and engagement
* Child and young person development
* Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the child
* Supporting transitions
* Multi-agency working
* Sharing information

Effective communication and engagement

Engaging with children is very important in an early years setting. Children enjoy the company of adults and engaging in a conversation with an adult. Good communication is central to working with children, young people and their families. It involves listening, questioning, understanding and responding to children, young people and those caring for them.

Child and young person development

Children and young people grow up and develop at different speeds, emotionally, socially, physically and intellectually. It is important to understand how developmental changes can impact on a child or young person’s behaviour. Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the child

Anyone who works with children and young people has a duty to safeguard and protect their Welfare. This is a big responsibility and requires special care and attention to ensure positive outcomes for children and young people.

Supporting transitions

Children and young people pass through a number of stages as they grow up and develop. The Common Core helps practitioners to support children and young people during these transition periods.

Multi-agency working

Multi-agency working is about different services working in partnership in order to prevent problems from occurring in the first place. It is most effective when agencies work together with shared aims and goals. Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the child

Sharing information in a timely and accurate way is an essential part of helping to deliver better services. It is important to understand and respect issues and legislation surrounding the control and confidentiality of information. Reasons for personal and individual approach to learning and development in Early Years frameworks: An adult can offer support, guidance and care for a child and a relationship can be built between the child and practitioner who would give a child a sense security and trust. It is extremely important that play is differentiated to meet the needs of a child in order for a child to develop to the best of their ability and to challenge themselves in order for them to excel cognitively ,physically, emotionally and socially.

By adults being involved in play they are able to pick up on the interests of the child and respond to their individual needs. For example if a child was interested in drawing and art, then the adult would be able to think of activities which the child would like for example an art afternoon where everyone draws or paints something that is special to them. This would give the practitioner an even closer view on what everyone within the class likes enabling them to cater to their interests. When an adult is able to observe play, they can pick up on any difficulties that a child may be showing and help the child to achieve the best they can. Observation: Observations can be taken during lessons or in the playground. They record what the child is doing in a subjective way. It’s most appropriate to use this method when child’s development is causing concern.

Assessment framework: It is the way in which child is assessed to decide whether they have any particular needs and what these needs may be. It is useful in deciding whether the child is reaching expected milestones of development in different areas. The assessment framework is how children are assessed in school, e.g. when a child reads, we write it in their reading records.

That are made – do you have progress charts or records that map children’s development, that you then have planned and unplanned times to evaluate, enabling you to support children’s development / be aware of their current stage of development? Assessment frameworks involve methods such as England’s EYFS profile, possibly baseline assessments for children entering a new setting, the way a setting assesses development for a possible 2 year progress check, P-scales are another method that may be used to assess the development of children with learning difficulties. Other materials from Early Support might be used.

Information from colleagues and carers: Parents/carers who know the child and colleagues expertise are invaluable, especially when planning for social and academic success for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities. If we are concerned about child’s development it’s good to ask/share information. with colleagues and parents that enable you to monitor children – maybe a parent pops in to explain they’re concerned their child might be feeling a little poorly one morning, a colleague lets you know how they saw a child achieve a milestone in their development.

When preparing environments for children, it is important to consider their age and stage of development. We also need to ensure that the experiences and play opportunities offered cover the areas of development outlined in the EYFS. We also need to consider whether the environment meets the needs of individual children. Children develop at different rates. Some children need more challenging activities while others may need a different type of activity or different resources. Observing individual children to see how the engage with the environment will help us to plan appropriately.

As well as working together with parents and carers practitioners need to recognise that this should be taking place with multi- agencies working together too. Setting should be pointing parents in the directions of other agencies which could be of benefit to them. Multi agency working is different services, agencies, professionals and practitioners who work together to provide services for children and parents. These services are sometimes integrated together to offer a more effective care for young children. Children in the early years may have a wide range of needs and working together with other professionals can have a positive impact on the child’s health, development and learning.

Professionals that work together with children and their families can share lots of information. They can agree which ways they may assess and plan for a particular child. Both children and the parents can be involved in any planning this will help the child to reach his full potential. It is also important that confidentiality is maintained at all times. By sharing information and all professionals concerned working together the outcome for the child can only be positive. Positive interactions Support and extend children’s spontaneous play by building on what they do through sensitive encouragement.

Provide social experiences and opportunities for children to talk about their experiences and ideas. Conversation, questions with alternative answers and thinking out loud are important tools in developing vocabulary and challenging thinking. Encouraging children to reflect on and tell others what they have been doing helps them to refine and develop their thinking. Give children whose home language is not English opportunities to use and develop their home Language in their play and learning, as well as providing activities where they can learn to talk in English. Listen to and accept the parents’ concerns, Compare notes about where and when difficulties occur and share ways of calming, soothing and sustaining effective interaction.

Babies, very young children and those with speech or other developmental delay or disability may Not say anything verbally, though they may communicate a great deal in other ways. Observe and listen closely to children so that you can identify their needs, capabilities and interests. Use this knowledge to decide what comes next and plan activities that will promote their progress In all areas of Learning and Development. Listen and build trusting relationships with children and their parents, incorporate their views into assessments and plan for the next steps in children’s learning. Age Appropriate usually refers to anything that falls into the range of suitability for a given age of child. Includes toys, national curriculum behaviour and skills.

Often child care providers will refer to activities as age-appropriate. Sculpting with clay would be age-appropriate for children of preschool age, but not for infants. Every child has the ability to learn and develop. Having high expectations is especially important in achieving better outcomes for the most vulnerable children. Some children require additional supports and different learning experiences and opportunities to help them learn and develop.

Early childhood Professionals:

* commit to high expectations for all children’s learning and development * ensure that every child experiences success in their learning and Development * recognise that every child can learn, but some children require quite different opportunities and supports to do this * Work with families to support children’s learning and development at home And in the community

Partnership model works around a theory of collaboration, understanding and communication. It’s a way that helps to recognise how the best outcomes can happen for children when care, development and learning provision/a setting, a child, their parent/family/carers, other settings and agencies all work cooperatively together.

A partnership model looks like this…

Identifying needs via a partnership /multi agency document can happen though the Pre CAF assessment check list and CAF common assessment framework which is shared with appropriate agencies.

Alongside the aims of home nation’s early years framework – eg England’s eyes, Wales’ foundation phase, Nil’s foundation stage or Scotlands prebirth-3 & curriculum for excellence, children’s progress is seen to be greater when a partnership model of working together is supported: evidence based on EPPE project Quote:

Check how your setting promotes an open door policy, involves, actively invites and works towards engaging parents/carers in the setting’s planning and decision making processes.

How do you share observations – daily happenings, how parents/carers contribute & are part of all assessments & updates by letting settings know about development, interests, medical and dietary needs – data protection, confidentiality act & freedom of information.

Considerations to take into account for a partnership model are the potential barriers that could be involved: Communication & how to overcome those barriers – language, use & access to technology eg. Phone, email, literacy skills, Confidence & self esteem – anyone with less confidence, sense of worth and value may feel uncomfortable/incapable of imparting their ideas, views and opinions.

Obligations of work – time, income all have a bearing on how active a parent/carer can be in a partnership model. Learning disabilities and culture can impact on relationships with care providers as an expectation to work together may be unexpected, unfamiliar, cause suspicion & be unwelcome it is also possible an appearance of professionalism creates a barrier, anxiety & withdrawal. Understanding equal opportunity, equality & inclusion in participation whilst this is a practice approach that may be extended to all it may not be taken up by individuals in the same way.

In possible contrast maybe, to the view as to how behaviourist theory relates to positive reinforcement – operant conditioning that may be exerted over children’s choice/motivation to participate, knowing that the less pressure adults feel exposed and obligated to, the more likely it is that they’ll feel free and welcomed in taking part where and when they are able to.

Evaluation methods eg. Feedback, survey and sensitive questionnaires can help identify areas a setting does well in, those for further investigation and aspects of provision that individuals enjoy being part of or can see a way to suggest improvement in. Breaking/breaching confidentiality in a partnership model can cause mistrust & impact negatively on the effectiveness of future engagement – oral, paper & electronically kept information data protection act. Barriers to participation are factors that can cause difficulties for families who experience discrimination preventing them from accessing services, barriers include environmental, attitudinal and institutional.

Attitudinal and institutional are often those of practitioners, as they quite often worry as they do not have enough understanding of how to meet the needs of a disabled child etc, settings should not have these barriers and barriers can be overcome by training. Environmental barriers are for example steps lack of space and language barriers which can be identified and removed steps replaced by ramp etc. These needs should be assessed before a child starts a setting so that an individual plan of the Childs/carers needs can be dealt with eg. Translator brought in as to overcome language barrier etc. Barriers to participation for carers most partnerships with parents run smoothly but sometime there can be a barrier in the way.

A parent might not always have time to and feel guilty so this needs to be treated sensitively like making a parents session to suit their time. This parent session could have child care so making it easier to be involved.

Other method for parents how lack time can be e- mails providing consent and security issues have been met may be a news letter. Learning journals and communication books are books that parents can take home and get information about what their child has been up to.

Phone calls can exchange information too. Confidence on the parents behave may be they have had bad experiences of settings or interactions with other professionals. Sometimes it is best to let the parent make first contact then use all our communication skills to help this. Some people speak in another language or English is not their first language so encouraging a parent to bring someone who can help them understand what is being said this can also be needed in written formats but most computers can now change the language of written words.

Disability can cause difficulties in the partnership the way to overcome these barriers are much dependent on the individuals need signing for deafness, large print for visual impaired, advocate. Culture can affect this partnership anxiety can be caused for someone how doesn’t know what is expected of them. We always try our best to create partnerships working with carers but there are people how wish not to be involved and we must respect their wishes. And they shouldn’t be pressured into doing so.

Sometimes stepping back can bring positive results. A more relaxed attitude can make cares feel more comfortable ad we might find out the reasons why attempts are not working. Parents are always encouraged to become more involved they could engage with other parents, give ideas.

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