Excellence in Early Years provision: The role of the adult


This series of 3 workshops will explore the essential role of the adult in early years education through the discussion and sharing of evidence-based theories and practical examples of the most effective ways to teach this unique age group. Supporting adult`s understanding of how to use a learning environment of continuous provision effectively to support children`s self – initiated learning will also be a focus across the sessions Participants will have opportunities to share and document the impact of the changes they make in teaching approaches and how they present their learning resources as well as considering how to share outcomes with the wider school community.

The desired outcomes of the module are:

A thorough knowledge of the links between early child development and practice in the classroom. An understanding of the importance of adult-child interactions. Strategies to extend thinking through the independent learning environment and enhanced planning. Practical ways to assess the impact of adult led interventions. Overall strategic advice on routines, environments and the quality of interactions. Adults with increased confidence in articulating the complexity of their role in the early years.

Session 1:

Establish how adults need to be and act to lead and support all aspects of early child development – Relationships are the key to expert teaching in the early years and the first module will examine the role of attachment and the important links to all aspects of child development and particularly early language, in order to secure expert teaching. The implications of our knowledge of how best children learn and what this means for the adult role are extensive and involve both senior strategic discussions on strategy as well as what happens in the classroom on a daily basis. This will include considering decisions around daily routines, the key person approach, the use of specialist teachers as well as systems of assessment. Questions to take back to the wider team to discuss and consider will be linked to Day 2.

Session 2:

Securing effective interactions – High quality interactions are central to effective teaching in the early years and for these to be as successful as possible requires skilled adults. The session will share ways to extend and support further learning and demonstrate how adults can engage in meaningful conversations with children during adult prompted and child-initiated activities. Increased skill and confidence in strategies to improve the quality of interactions are key to children extending their vocabulary, absorbing new knowledge and making connections within areas of continuous provision. The role of the learning environment is critical in supporting high quality teaching and methods of auditing current spaces will be shared and linked to day 3.

Session 3:

Planning and monitoring the effectiveness of interventions to extend learning – Building on children`s interests is a key strategy to further engagement and high levels of motivation. Providing enhancements which connect with children`s interests and introduce new knowledge is key to embedding and extending learning. The session will share practical examples of adult – child led enquiries and project planning as well as look at how the effectiveness of these interventions can be monitored. Drawing upon techniques such as joint observations, lesson studies and scanning for Well Being and Involvement, the session will consider a variety of practical approaches for practitioners and leads to take back to school and determine the effectiveness of planning at both classroom and strategic level.

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