Early Years Foundation Stage Practitioner newsletter - issue 22

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Welcome to the 22nd issue of the EYFS Practitioner newsletter.

What do you need from us?

If you would like to help us plan ahead in this current time please email us with your suggestions to workforcedevelopment@essex.gov.uk.

EYFS Virtual Conference 2021

colourful cones

Come and join us for our virtual EYFS Conference. The day will consist of five empowering sessions (including Q & A) delivered by professionals from Essex County Council.

The event will be opened by the Early Years and Childcare Sufficiency and Sustainability Manager.

  • Session 1 - Culturally Inclusive Environments - Equality and Inclusion Officer (Early years)
  • Session 2 - Business Management -  Business Management Consultant (Early years)
  • Session 3: The Importance of Play in the Early Years - Senior Specialist Educational Psychologist (Early years)
  • Session 4: Key Messages to the EYFS sector - Early Years Education Partner
  • Session 5: Music in the EYFS - Music Service Business Development Officer.

The event will be closed by the Head of Education and Early Years (South).

For more information and to book your place, please open the booking form.

World autism awareness week

World autism awareness week is 29 March - 4 April 2021.

Autism.org has some free early years resources to encourage children to explore the idea of difference.

EYFS reforms briefings

child with wooden blocks

We would like to invite you to a briefing on the Early Years Foundation Stage reforms due to come into effect in September 2021.

Information will include updates on the Statutory Framework, Early Learning Goals, Early Years Foundation Stage Profile and non-statutory guidance (Development Matters). Available dates are taking place between 11 May and 12 June 2021.

For more information and to book your place, please open the booking form.

Wivenhoe Park Day Nursery sensory play

Wivenhoe Park Day Nursery have shared with us their 'sensory spider web'. This activity looks like a great way to explore lots of textures while practicing those fine and gross motor skills.

If your setting has found a successful activity that you'd like to share to inspire others, send a description and photo to workforcedevelopment@essex.gov.uk. Please do not include children's faces in photos.

Thank you for sharing, Wivenhoe Park Day Nursery! 


ELKLAN speech and language training

Elklan’s evidence based Speech and Language Support for three - five year olds is a highly successful externally accredited training course which equips staff to develop these key communication skills in children proved to ensure later success in school. This is the only accredited training in speech, language and communication that is aimed specifically at those working with three - fives.

This course is running in April 2021, for more information please click here.

Transitions in early years

boy with backpack

At this time of year many parents will be waiting to find out which primary school their child will attend in September. Transitions are central to children’s development and emotional wellbeing, the way transitions are handled affects children’s capacity to cope with change and indeed the impact can last into adulthood.

When preparing for changes build on already established parent/carer partnerships and develop effective communication and trust. Encourage families to talk to their children about upcoming transitions. If you have new or returning children you could send a ‘welcome’ card.

Stories and activities shared via social media during lockdown have been warmly welcomed by parents and children and this approach could be extended as part of your settling arrangements, including a virtual tour and overview of routines in the setting to watch at home.

Information sharing is important for children attending multiple setting to support smooth transitions. With permission from home development information can be shared and providers can work together to ensure that development is supported and children’s individual needs are met.

The draft Birth to 5 Matters document contains pertinent information to support all transitions within early years.

For further information around transition in Essex please visit the Early Years and Childcare website.

For further support around transitions please contact your Early Years Education Partner.

Baby room leader

baby with block

15 and 22 April 2021 9:30am-12pm (must attend both sessions)

Are you a baby room leader working with children aged 0 - two years? This course will inspire you to develop your  leadership skills and explore how to lead a successful team.

You will share ideas around good practice and how to achieve a high quality provision for your youngest children.

For more information and to book your place, please open the booking form.

Team around the child

The Children and Families Hub which is the front door to both Family Solutions and Children’s Social Care has developed an e-newsletter.  Subscribe using this link and each month you will receive:

  • Interesting short articles about new support services available to families in Essex
  • News and articles written by people in the Hub
  • Top tips you can apply before and during raising a Request for Support.

The Team Around the Family Support Officers (TAFSOs) are delivering regular Early Help and Team Around the Family two hour workshops, if you haven’t attended or facilitated a Team Around the Family (TAF) meeting before, this is an extremely helpful interactive session. Booking is through the Essex Safeguarding Children`s Board here.

For all enquiries about Early Help and the Team Around the Family approach, there are a range of resources, templates and `how to` guides here or email TAFSO@essex.gov.uk and your local TAFSO will get back to you.

Essex Teaching Awards

leaf logo

Congratulations to all those in our EYFS settings and schools which were nominated for an Essex Teaching Award.

Although no face-to-face event could take place this year due to Covid19, we still wanted to celebrate and recognise the hard work you all continue to provide.

The nominations have now all been received and collated and we have created a brochure which you can view online.

Cloth nappy campaign

baby in nappy

At Love Essex, we think cloth nappies are great! And we want to know if you do too. 

We are looking to expand our cloth nappy campaign and are undertaking research to see how Love Essex can support early years and childcare providers when working with families that use cloth nappies.

Please help us out by taking part in our short survey. This should take you less than five minutes and will help us plan how to continue supporting people to use cloth nappies on their babies and children.

You can find out more about our cloth nappy campaign on the Love Essex website.

Online training opportunities

You can view the online training opportunities available to the early years workforce on the Training Programme page. Here are a few examples of what's on offer.

  • Autism Education Trust training
  • Baby Room Leader
  • Business management termly update
  • Committee forum
  • Early years mental health - Me, You, Us - Understand emotional dynamics in the early years setting
  • Early years mental health: the role of the early years practitioner
  • EYFS Conference 2021
  • Early years foundation stage reforms briefings 2021
  • Safeguarding training
  • Supporting children learning English as an additional language
  • Trauma Perceptive Practice: The Essex approach to understanding behaviour and supporting emotional wellbeing
  • Youth mental health awareness



Post it note

Our archive page on the Early Years and Childcare website will host three terms’ worth of newsletters. This is to ensure that all of our information is current and up to date.