Ways in which the Voyage Team encourage partnership with parents of children in First Steps, Caterpillars and Butterflies (0-4 years):
All children 0-4 years will be given a 'Learning Log' when they start their Voyage journey. This needs to be brought in with the child every time they attend, so that Key Workers can write in them and maintain them. They may write comments about your child's day, a 'WOW' moment, or they may have a question for you. Each week, a 'homework' sheet will be stuck in to encourage taking part in particular activities at home. It is important that you work with us and reply to our comments or queries, or you may even have a 'WOW' moment that you want to share with us yourselves.
Within First Steps and Caterpillars particularly, you will be provided with a 'daily sheet' at the end of your child's session containing information about; food and drink intake, whether children have had a sleep, when they've had a nappy or clothes change and what activities have been put out to entice the children's learning and play.
Whilst the Butterflies room do not provide a 'daily sheet', if your child/ren has stayed for a hot school meal over lunch time, then you will receive information about what they have eaten and how much.
'Parents and Children Together'
Every half-term, we organise a P.A.C.T session, usually relating to a specific event such as Valentines Day, Easter, Christmas etc. We invite parents/carers or other relatives to come along and play with the children and take part in related activities. We try to encourage participation from parents/carers as much as we can, as it gives the perfect opportunity to talk with Key Workers, have a read of their children's profiles and get an insight to how the children spend their time when they come to Voyage.
Mixed Age Groups
Voyage @ Flash Ley Extended Care Provision
'Working with mixed age groups'
Looking after a group of mixed-age children can be a challenge. We address this by providing a varied menu of activities. We are also aware of the children's interests, aiming to keep them involved and ensuring they are learning through their play. We endeavour to:
- Offer resources to encourage consolidation, risk taking and developing skills
- Encourage the children to share their knowledge and skills
- Reinforce co-operation and participation positively, and stress the importance of caring for and helping each other
- Ensure that there is planned flexibility with child initiated activities and interests
- Make sure that adults engage with the children rather than lead the activities
- Keep all of the children involved all of the time, when selecting activities to encourage ownership and heighten sustainability
- Make the setting stimulating. Encourage the children to see it as their space by creating an engaging atmosphere
- Access the outdoors as children learn at a different level when they are outside. Free flow provision enables children to plan and transport items from inside the setting
- Get to know the children in our setting, relationships are important. Listen to the children and value what they have to say
- Be spontaneous - prepared to adapt activities and planning, if the children lead in a different direction
- Encourage male role models to be a part of our setting wherever possible
- Focus on communication. Make good eye contact and explain things in a clear, calm and age appropriate manner
- Provide children with areas of interest and exploration. Develop their independence by trusting them with responsibilities
- Plan how to encourage more vulnerable children to take part in mixed age groups as they can often benefit most from working this way
- Talk to children and adults and reflect on activities that worked well or could have been done differently