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Tickets are selling fast for Nursery World's Two-year-Olds: Policy and Practice conference on 19 April, which features a fantastic line-up of early years experts all ready to share their knowledge and experience.


Education and childcare minister Elizabeth Truss will start the conference with an overview of the Government's programme to offer free early education places for two-year-olds from disadvantaged families.

The latest names to sign up to speak at the conference include Sue Chambers, consultant and senior associate for LEYF, on the Progress Check at Two and child behaviour, head of Norland Nursery Clare Crowther on communication and language, Wokingham Borough Council on the two-year-old check, and Cheshire East on planning around the senses and the play environment.

Chairing the conference will be Julian Grenier, a leading figure within the early years community. He is headteacher at Sheringham Nursery School and Children's Centre and was formerly an early years advisor to Tower Hamlets Council, London.

Guiding delegates through the rollout of the free places will be James Hempsall. As director of Hempsalls, he is leading the 'Achieving Two-Year-Olds' support programme for early years settings for the DfE.

Top early years experts will then provide guidance on best practice. Penny Tassoni will look at the play, emotional and learning needs of the two-year-old. Advice on planning, observation and assessment will be provided by Vicky Hutchin, an expert in this field, while under-threes specialist Julia Manning-Morton will focus on the role of the key person. Rounding off the programme will be workshops, on areas such as 'home learning' and 'schemas'.

Martin Huleatt, of conference sponsor Community Playthings, says, 'Anyone setting up an environment for twos must be closely tuned-in to know when the children need nurture and when they are ready for adventure.'

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