Early Education was awarded funding from the Walcot Foundation to support practitioners to work effectively with parents in the London Borough of Lambeth.
About the project
Practitioners have a lot to learn from each other. There is overwhelming research evidence that parents and family support for early learning makes the biggest difference in outcomes for children. The most important influences in children’s development are those that come from the home. Yet despite the evidence base, the skills that practitioners have to work effectively with families are for the most part, in their infancy.
The initial P for Partnership programme ran from March 2010 to April 2011. Four of the five nursery schools and children’s centres in Lambeth participated in partnership with the Lambeth local authority early years team.
P for Partnership had two aims:
- To support parents’ involvement in their children’s learning to develop communication, language and literacy and mathematical thinking in their children, as well as promote personal, social and emotional development through improved motivation, self-confidence and self-esteem in both their child and themselves.
- To support practitioners to work with parents to enable them to understand the importance of play and exploration in supporting their child’s developing communication , language and literacy as well as their mathematical knowledge and understanding and to show them how they can use simple resources to do this outside the formal education settings.
The programme was designed to both challenge and support the work of practitioners in schools in the ways in which they work with parents to enhance the early learning of their children as well to encourage the ongoing learning of the children’s parents. Diverse programmes of work were developed, carefully planned to meet the needs of the practitioners, the schools in which they work and the communities of children, parents and families with whom they worked. These programmes of work supported practitioners with additional skills and expertise to work with those children at risk of underachievement, with additional support through an inclusive programme of culturally responsive activities.
The P for Partnership programme of work built on and added value to the existing work of the four nursery schools and children’s centres. It was underpinned by the principles of the Early Years Foundation Stage with a particular focus on:
- personal, social and emotional development
- communication, language and literacy
- problem solving, reasoning and numeracy
During the course of the P for Partnership programme, Government announced a number of initiatives designed to shape and impact the roles in which both practitioners and parents in the early learning of their children. The P for Partnership programme of work identified a number of themes, across the range of programmes of work that contribute to the ongoing successful engagement of and effective working with parents.
Read a summary of the project