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Six-year-old Lydia Stephenson met Her Royal Highness the Countess of Wessex at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London

    News
  • Wednesday, June 2, 2004
(Photograph) - Six-year-old Lydia Stephenson met Her Royal Highness the Countess of Wessex at St Mary's Hospital in Paddington, London, last week to launch the children's book When Monty had meningitis. It will be given free by the Meningitis Trust to families affected by the disease. Lydia, from Dursley, Gloucestershire, lost fingers and a thumb and suffered severe scarring as a result of meningitis when she was two. The Countess is backing the Trust's Support for Life Appeal. Photo: Meningitis Trust

Local pay deals

    News
  • Wednesday, June 2, 2004
I am a nursery nurse in Scotland and I think that all nursery nurses should be on the same national salary. Unison should not have allowed any local deals to take place, for then we would all be receiving the same rate of pay. After all, we all do the same job whatever area we work in. We all have had the same training and received the same qualification.

Pay in perspective

    News
  • Wednesday, June 2, 2004
I wish to comment on the deal given to nursery nurses in Falkirk. It is good that they have been given more responsibility by being allowing to be in charge of the day-to-day running of the nursery, because they are more than able, with their experience and skills. However, the pay deal is still not enough. The salary of 21,732 sounds like a lot of money but, considering that nursery classes are only open during school term, that is, 39 weeks a year, what that figure actually equates to is 18,388.

Whose fault is it?

    News
  • Wednesday, June 2, 2004
Childminders who have been wrongly accused of negligence should not automatically assume that they will get an unsympathetic hearing in the face of a growing 'compensation culture'. I am a partner at the law firm Rowe Cohen, and recently I successfully defended a 100,000 claim against a childminder who had been accused of negligence. In this case an eight-year-old girl had fallen at the top of the stairs of the childminder's home and badly injured herself on a table.

Read the signs

    News
  • Wednesday, June 2, 2004
Using gestures and facial expressions to accompany speech will help babies become skillful communicators as they begin to learn to talk. Opal Dunn explains how

Welsh training for early years

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
The Welsh Assembly plans to train at least 150 Welsh-language early years practitioners by 2006. Jane Davidson, minister for education and lifelong learning, has invited Mudiad Ysgolian Meithrin, which promotes and supports the education of children under five through the Welsh medium, and Trinity College in Camarthen to work in partnership to deliver the training programme. She said the Assembly was fulfilling a target to create 'a network of support and quality training to enhance and extend early years Welsh-medium provision'.

Smooth moves

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
It's vital for children's well-being to carry through the child-centred approach to learning in the reception class to Year 1, says Sally Featherstone, co-author of Smooth Transitions - Building on the Foundation Stage Most five-year-olds in England will now be in their final term of reception class where, it is hoped, they will be accessing the kind of child-centred curriculum laid out in the Foundation Stage guidance. What is important now is that young children make a stress-free move into Year 1 and continue to enjoy this same child-centred approach to learning in their new class.

SNAP Childcare

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Childcare students can gain valuable experience this summer working with children who have special needs. SNAP Childcare is offering current and recently qualified students a placement as a mother's help for a minimum of four weeks over the holiday period. Students will gain experience, basic training and an understanding of working with children with additional needs, and earn 100 a week. The parents they work for will complete an assessment/reference that will assist carers in finding future jobs. For more information about the scheme, contact Sally Britton at SNAP Childcare on 020 7729 2200.

Planning for play with instruments

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Most early years settings have a collection of musical instruments suitable for children to play. All too often, though, I notice instruments tossed rather carelessly into baskets or on to trolleys, rarely brought out or arranged neatly in 'music areas' that the children hardly ever use. Devise about six varied and practical ways of providing opportunities for the children to use the instruments that you have and rotate these in a planning routine, say, one week for each. Here are some ideas: 1 Place a gathering drum in the centre of the floor for about half an hour, with one adult to play partner the children.

Take my advice

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
How will newly-appointed Foundation Stage advisors support early years practitioners? Catherine Gaunt talks to the woman at the top Last month a group of national early years experts took up new jobs as the first regional directors for the Foundation Stage. Their remit is to work closely with local authorities and Early Years Development and Childcare Partnerships (EYDCPs) to support training in the Foundation Stage curriculum in early years settings and primary schools. The team of 12 regional advisers will work under Lesley Staggs, who became the first ever national director of the Foundation Stage when she took up the post last October and whose appointment was so warmly welcomed by the early years sector.

Calling all alumni

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
This summer represents a landmark at Godalming College, as we celebrate the tenth anniversary of the introduction of childcare and education courses to the sixth-form college's syllabus. Celebration organisers are particularly keen to hear what has happened to former students since they left the college. Since its first enrolment of 14 students in 1994, the childcare department has taken the lead in many initiatives, both on campus and within the wider community. Through their work placements, students have re-inforced the college's close links with nurseries, schools and children's organisations throughout the country, and have organised the college's charity fundraising activities in support of Children in Need, Red Nose Day and CHASE children's hospice.

Smooth moves

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
It's vital for children's well-being to carry through the child-centred approach to learning in the reception class to Year 1, says Sally Featherstone, co-author of Smooth Transitions - Building on the Foundation Stage

School transition is 'abrupt'

    News
  • Wednesday, May 26, 2004
Disquiet among teachers and early years practitioners over the transition between the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 has been noted in two reports for the Government.

Jason Boyd

    News
  • Wednesday, May 19, 2004
(Photograph) - Professional golfer Jason Boyd gets in the swing of things with four-year-old Angus Campbell and fellow pupils of the Total Golf Programme for four- to eight-year-olds at Montrose Links Golf Club in Angus. 'They use proper golf equipment which is the right size for them,' said Mr Boyd. 'The children are developing skills but they all progress at their own level, so there is no pressure. This is fun.'

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