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A project from Bookstart is offering children's centre staff a way to work more closely with disadvantaged families. Ruth Thomson explains.

Enrich a child's language skills by talking about books, say Claire Bates and Helen Roscoe, Suffolk County Council Early Years and Childcare Service

Many sports and games require good balls skills, but learning to catch, throw, kick and aim benefits young children in ways far beyond the playing field.

Simple equipment and activities are all it takes to develop children's ball skills.

Spoons can be a stimulating resource, with a little bit of imagination, says Alice Sharp.

Many parents may think they left mathematics at the school gate but, of course, it permeates every aspect of our day-to-day life, from cooking and checking bills to working out how long it will take us to reach home.

Have you ever watched your child playing with mud and wondered what it is that so enthrals them? Their enthusiasm almost certainly lies in a desire to explore and be creative, and such explorations start at a very early age.

As a parent, literacy is probably the area that you are most determined for your child to succeed in. It is important, both in school and in life, and being able to read and write confidently and fluently are vital skills that we all need.

Creating a lasting legacy for our future Olympians is a must, say Hayley Cannell and Nicky Bushell, joint managers of Oakey Dokeys Pre-school in Essex

New term ahead and time for some changes, say Nicola Bushell and Hayley Cannell, joint managers of Oakey Dokeys pre-school in Essex.