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Two-thirds of children who took the pilot Phonics Screening Check for six-year-olds last summer failed the test, Department for Education statistics show.

Babies born between 32 and 36 weeks fare less well at school, according to a new study, which recommends that children born early should have a school readiness check before starting school to help identify any problems.

Becoming real-life research scientists for the day sparked children's enthusiasm for enquiring and learning. Lisa Jane Wildey, Early Years Professional and pre-school team leader at University of Sheffield Union of Students' Pre-school, observed the long-lasting effects.

The benefits of providing risky activities to children and keeping their parents on board are explained by Sylvie Gambell and Ben Hasan.

Under the revised EYFS, planning for children's needs undergoes only subtle changes arising from the differences between prime and specific areas, as Ann Langston, director of Early Years Matters consultancy, explains

Don't stop at dolls, but supply all the equipment that babies need in an essential collection of role-play resources, says Nicole Weinstein.

Poetry is for everyone, as leading children's poet Michael Rosen tells Karen Faux, with suggestions for introducing rhyme in an early years setting.

There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to the learning that children bring with them to start school, say David Whitebread and Sue Bingham Photographs by Justin Thomas at Homerton Children's centre, Cambridge.

Early years settings are responding to the Government's focus on 'school readiness' by building better links with schools and putting more emphasis on helping children to develop their independence skills.

An education centre designed to encourage city children to explore the environment outside the classroom has been opened in London.