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What do you recommend?

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by bobbycatrules, Sep 8, 2011.

  1. bobbycatrules

    bobbycatrules New commenter

    Hello, I am returning to FS 2 after a couple of years in KS2.
    In my ITT my mentor told me that during a CLL lesson all the child- led activiities should be based on CLL, whereas in my NQT year, the head said in a CLL lesson the children must be allowed to choose activities from all 6 areas of learning- they were not to be limited in their choice. As a result, the children in my NQT year all chose to play with the scooters etc, and as a result they never went in the writing area and the CLL profile points were dire.
    Therefore, my question is, do you limit child- led activtities to CLL ones during a dedicated CLL lesson?
    Thanks for your thoughts xx
     
  2. Miss Piggywig

    Miss Piggywig New commenter

    I think this depends on what works for you and your children. I find if I limit children to CLL activities then they are forever asking "Can I do..... now?" I also haven't the time to change all areas to literacy for literacy lesson and numeracy for numeracy lesson.What is working for usat the moment is to make sure all children are dirrected to a focused CLL activity through out the week in addition to the phonic teaching. We also use challenges in Areas of provison which earn stickers, team points and prizes if completed in Child led activity time. There are still some children mainly boys in my setting who don't take this up so we try and target them when we are working in areas of provision and also try and add CLL activities whereever they are playing. Kind of Drip Drip effect.
     
  3. Have I missed something about the meaning of child-led? I don't recognise it in these posts at all.
     
  4. In Reception you must have a balance. Forget about the philosophy that all children must choose what they do. Of course if you allow this some will choose to ride bikes instead of being taught to read. You are a teacher. You must have authority over what your children need to learn.
     
  5. Do as you see fit, but don't pretend it's child-led if it isn't.
     
  6. bobbycatrules

    bobbycatrules New commenter

    Thanks for your advice everyone.
     
  7. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    I think you would struggle to have an activity that doesn't involve CLLD but the idea that you have a CLLD lesson with a carousel of all activities focusing on CLLD was fashionable 20 years ago and doesn't really fit in with EYFS ethos. I don't think you can attribute the poor writing results to CI. Writing is something you need to teach and provide opportunities for the children to use what they have learnt.

     
  8. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    if scooters are a problem don't have them out every day
     
  9. Put the scooters away sometimes but don't forget that in order to sit up at a table and write children need core body strength, and muscle strength in arms and shoulders.
     
  10. marymoocow

    marymoocow Star commenter

    Agree with Msz. Also ensure there are writing ops in the other areas as well, not just a writing area for e.g. Clip boards, laminated menus, message pad, writing walls in the construction area which are great for boys in particular.
     
  11. Are you teaching in England? I am based in Wales.

    My colleague in Y1/2 and I have been following Foundation Phase principles for a couple of years now and this year have decided to 'blend' our classes. We have set up continuous provision for all the areas but only one, ie not in each class.

    We have assessed all our children and are teaching them by stage not age so we have set mathematical development and CLL sessions where the children move around according to their stage.

    Once they have finished their adult-led task the children are allowed to choose which area they would like to go into. This means that we have a free flow between our N/R and Y1/2 class and the outdoor area.

    We keep to our classes for Registration in the mornings and reflection after lunch, but other than that the children move around as they wish.


    In answer to your post, before we set this up we did find that some children always chose the same areas. We did try always having literacy activities during literacy sessions, maths during maths etc but that requires a lot of organisation and goes against the idea that the activities should be child led and also that the children should be able to access all the resources available.

    I think it is about building trust with the children. We have got to a stage where the children know that if they come and work with us when asked to, then afterwards they will be able to choose, and particularly now that we have these set areas across the two classes we find that children who previously always headed for the same place are branching out and choosing other things to do. Even if the children are involved in something they are happy to come and work with us because they know that they will be allowed to return to it. In the early stages with Nursery children this might mean that they bring a car, farm animal, model with them initially but they soon realise that they can return to their activity and so are happy to come away from it for a while.

    We have everything out and available, well labelled (pictures and words) and have been strict about instilling the need to tidy up after themselves, stressing that they need to leave the area in a good condition for the children coming after them. In the construction area they are only allowed to put something on the saving table overnight, to give them the chance to show their parents in the morning, to make sure that we don't run out of lego, polydron etc and they have accepeted this.

    We thought that we might have to put limits on the numbers allowed in each area but, to be quite honest, the children seem to be policing this themselves.

    We are following the same topics so that the areas and our activities can reflect this and, eventually, we can cater for our MAT and ALN children by giving them the opportunity to explore the topic at their level.

    You mentioned that your CLL points were dire. We follow Read Write inc so have focused phonics sessions and encourage emergent writing as the children get to grips with their sounds but, in line with RWi, have stopped doing the tradtional practising writing in sand, foam etc - phonics sessions are for phonics and choosing is purely child-led. We found that when we started RWi (we introduced it in October 2010) the children were beginning to gravitate towards the writing /mark making area of their own accord once they became confident with their sounds.

    We have been having sessions this week where an adult has been introducing the children to an area, showing them where everything is, how to use it etc, with the aim that they will learn to become independent in all the areas.
    One aspect that we are addressing at the moment is the noise levels in the Continuous Provision areas when we are working with small groups but we have the two classrooms and quiet areas within them which we can move to if we wish.

    It is quite difficult to explain and it took a leap of faith to set this up but it seems to be working well and the children like it. My colleague and I get along really well and have an excellent working relationship which is vital if this is going to work. At the moment we have more Y1/2 children coming to N/R than the other way around but we have been asking the N/R LSA to base herself in the other class for part of the day to give our younger children the confidence to go and investigate the areas in the other class.

    I must admit to having been really anxious about our new structure but was open to giving it a go and we have had tremendous support from all our parents, governors and our Head is very keen to see it work. So far, so good!
     
  12. bobbycatrules

    bobbycatrules New commenter

    Once again, thanks for your thoughts everyone.
     
  13. bobbycatrules

    bobbycatrules New commenter

    Oh right, that would explain why my mentor taught me to do this in the first place during my training year.
    The school I did my NQT year in Reception at had very poor CLL end of profile outcomes before I got there and continues to several years after I left. OFSTED have picked up on this recently as I am still friends with teachers who work there.
    Thanks Msz, very helpful.
     
  14. Poor results could be down to all sorts of factors. You need to look at them alongside the on-entry data. It's unlikely that they are down to CI activities as it sounds like you had poor results when operating with a carousel of adult initiated activities as advised by your mentor. This is an old-fashioned idea, although of course that does not make it wrong, and it does not sit well with the EYFS, which recognises that young children do not work at their best when following instructions from adults without the adult support to go with it.
     
  15. Sorry I have just re-read your post and realised the carousel of CLL activities was recommended during your PGCE. Is that right? And in your NQT school, with the low CLL results, children accessed all areas during a session labelled CLL. Nevertheless the poor results could be down to various reasons, only found through analysing data, provision and children's responses.how much support did children get during free flow? How well did staff develop children's spoken language skills in play? What resources were available and how well do they support CLL in play? How well did focus activities feed into children's play, encouraging the development of independent CLL skills?It remains a fact that children are unlikely to remember and follow instructions independently when accessing activities independently unless it is a very pedestrian non ambitious activity.
     

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