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Courses on supporting families from diverse cultural backgrounds have helped one setting's understanding and communication. By Gabriella Jozwiak

To improve their relationships with kinship carers, and to help make these people feel less isolated, practitioners should understand their particular challenges. By Nicola Stobbs and Alison Prowle

A home learning early literacy project in Merseyside has improved communication and language development for those children and parents in need of extra support. By Laura Gregory

Comics and cartoons, in whatever medium they come in, can help develop children’s literacy and self-esteem, but their depiction of family structures is limiting, finds Yasmin Stefanov-King

Ten years ago, a landmark study was published on speech and language development. A follow-up report is being prepared for next year, with parents now invited to submit evidence to a panel. Hannah Crown speaks to its chair

With ‘blended families’ on the increase, early years practitioners need to be in tune with the feelings of the children affected, and aware of their obligations to both parents, writes Annette Rawstrone

Far from being something to avoid for busy parents, cooking with children is a great way to spend time together, explains Penny Tassoni

Early intervention programmes are finding greater success by engaging both parents, rather than just mothers, as well as enrolling them before the birth of their child, discovers Annette Rawstrone

When parents split up, practitioners can be pivotal in helping children feel secure and understand the situation. Annette Rawstrone explains what staff can do to help both children and parents