The nursery beat off competition from 53 other early years settings to be crowned the winner of the Shine a Light 2011 Hello campaign awards, under the category of Communication Friendly Award - early years.
The awards are run by the Communication Trust and Pearson Assessment.
The awards, which ‘shine a light’ on the inspiring work and achievement by the children’s workforce in developing the communication skills of children from birth, are a flagship event of the Hello campaign, the national year of communication.
Staff from the University of East Anglia Nursery in Norwich were presented their award by radio and TV presenter Vanessa Feltz at a ceremony held at Pearson’s head office in London on Wednesday (23 November 2011).
Judges including Communication Champion Jean Gross and Nursery World’s editor Liz Roberts, praised University of East Anglia Nursery staff for their ‘excellent awareness of how speech, language and communication needs can affect children’s life chances, and how they work closely with parents.’
The University of East Anglia Nursery cares for 106 children aged six weeks to four-years-old. The 30 members of staff include two SENCOs and two Early Language Lead Practitioners. Four practitioners also have a level 1 British Sign Language qualification.
The nursery promotes speaking and listening both within the setting and at home, with the creation of Communication-Friendly Spaces, and story sacks which parents can use to support their children’s speech and language development.
Practitioners at the setting go above and beyond to meet the needs of children, learning sign language to communicate with a deaf child who attends the nursery, and encouraging non-English families to speak to their children in the language they are most comfortable with.
The other winners of the Shine a Light 2011 awards are:
- Team of the Year Award-The Play and Communication Team, Barking and Dagenham.
- Team of the Year Award: Multi-agency- Early Years Teams Stoke on Trent City Council.
- Team of the Year Award: SLT- Paediatric Speech and Language Therapy Service, Community Health Newham.
- Communication Strategy Award-Every Sheffield Child Articulate and literate, Sheffield.
- Commissioning Award-Worcester City Council and NHS Worcestershire.
- Employee Support Award-The Co-operative
- The Hello Campaign Award-Bristol Hello Group
- Hello Young Person of the Year Award-Jack Marshall
- Outstanding Achievement Award-Stoke Speaks Out, Stoke-on-Trent