Where good habits and practice begin
We think early years is where good habits and practice begin.
Indeed, the following phrase has been used time and again following a professional learning experience with our team:
“Too often, early years is an afterthought – so it was really refreshing to be part of a training day that gave equal emphasis and respect to our early years staff.”
Approximately one third of our work is with early years teams. Our Challenging Learning Process is particularly relevant for groups of pre-schools, nurseries, day care centres, and kindergartens. From 2016-2019, we ran a long-term project in Skanderborg, Denmark working with all 38 early years settings in their municipality. This led to significant gains in:
- The use of feedback and its positive outcomes;
- A development in the language of learning used by staff and parents;
- Improvements in the way staff plan, monitor and encourage children’s development;
- More active participation by all children
- A boost in the self-efficacy of children and the collective efficacy of staff
Our Challenging Early Learning consultancy and resources will give all staff working with 0-6-year-olds the best strategies for helping children be more cooperative, curious, resilient, happy, articulate and thoughtful.
We’ll come to your Early Years setting. We’ll share with you some of the very best ways to use feedback and praise to encourage young children; improve the quality of dialogue; use the ASK model to develop children’s attitudes, skills and knowledge; engage and enhance children’s thinking skills; and help staff, children and their families to develop a growth mindset. We can guide and inspire the children’s parents/carers as well as work with all staff.
As you will see from our Event Listings, we host many conferences around the world with speakers as well-known as Carol Dweck, Jo Boaler, Jaz Ampaw-Farr and our very own James Nottingham and Martin Renton. Whenever early years staff attend our conferences, we always ensure theory and examples used are relevant to those working with 0-6-year-olds.
As well as the award-winning book, Challenging Early Learning, written for all staff working with 3-7-year-olds, we have a range of activity resources and Learning Pit® ideas for early years staff and parents.
The most significant and sustainable improvements come with our Challenging Learning Process, as used in the Skanderborg project mentioned above. This 2-3-year process begins where you are and guides you to where you want to be. We help you set your vision; coach your staff; build leadership capacity; and enhance professional dialogue. Early years settings tend to do this process together with other settings and/or local schools.
We are happy to organise a study tour for you to witness the impact of Challenging Learning in early years settings around the world. On average, we host 12-20 study tours per year. Sometimes we organise everything, including travel, food, and accommodation; other times we just sort out a workshop and visits to early years settings for you. If you let us know what you want, we’ll take care of the rest.