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No adult outside....

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by Doodlem, Aug 29, 2011.

  1. Hi

    Next year (well next week, that's scary!) I have a reception class of 16 children. I have a TA in the mornings, but the afternoons is just me! I was wondering about access to the outside area - we have a very small gated covered area just outside my classroom which I would ideally run as free flow access, and a larger area of playground which is not secure (so adult supervision would be a must).

    I'm used to having 3 TA's (spoilt I know!) so to go from a large team to just me in the afternoons is going to be a big shock!

    Can I still have free access to the gated outside area in the afternoon if I am inside with a group? My thoughts were not during the first few weeks while I judge whether the children are sensible enough to be trusted with sand, water etc unsupervised...
    It would be such a shame not to be able to use the space for half the day

    I can only safely have about 6 children outside (very small space!!) and don't have a very good view of it from the classroom.

    Any opinions/advice would be much appreciated.
  2. I would have said that unless you are outside then no children can be, you must be where the children are. You can always take every one out every afternoon.
  3. It doesn't sound a good idea, if you do not have a good view. I would only do it if I could see every inch of the area with ease. That's a shame, because giving 6 children that freedom, with no adult poking around, would probably be good for them.
  4. I have the same issue and feel that if I place myself with my group by the door then it will be fine as I'll be see the majority of what is happening. I tried this for a couple of afternoons in the summer and it worked really well....however, the gated area is completely secure and quite small. Maybe hand the decision over to your head and as you said in your post assess your children first. Hope that helps!
  5. emilystrange

    emilystrange Star commenter

    my EY advisers took a dim view of that. was told that an adult must be there facilitating their learning at all times, even when i said that adult could be watching and observing from afar. personally i think the children would like a little peace every day without feeling like we're breathing down their necks. you sometimes get quite a bit more CLL and PSED when you watch sneakily, i think.
  6. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    We always have an adult outside ... but were told by an advisor that we didn't need one ... seems to be another thing that hasn't a definitive answer
  7. fulloffun

    fulloffun New commenter

    we have a small area outside that is secure and we can see from the classroom window,(we have a plastic freezer strip door so keep the door open) I had the LEA risk assessment person come and check out the situation and he was quite happy that a small group worked outside without an adult.
  8. I was told the same by one of our senior advisors, though I do think it was about having good visibilty from inside.
    Personally I wouldn't want them outside without an adult. Perhaps in a smaller area like yours, with limited resources it could work.
  9. Try it and see. Do a risk assessment and then evaluate it as it goes. Adults cannot facilitate children's learning all the time! It is essential that children have some freedom as long as it is deemed safe and they are playing appropriately. There is a difference between no supervision and out of sight. Once I trust my children I go through the risks, rules and guidelines and explain that these need to be considered if they want to play outside for short periods of time without an adult. I stay in the classroom with the door open and check on them regularly (gated secure playground). This has worked brilliantly now for over 3 years. Interestingly at lunchtime there are many times when children are not in sight of adults and nobody says anything about that. How can these children ever learn to take responsibility for their actions if they are watched all the time?

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