Books for children Cockfosters Nursery Early Years Education Early Years Foundation Stage Enfield Nursery Forest Schools Hadley Wood Nursery Montessori Ofsted outstanding Pre-School Learning Reading for early years

Supporting learning at home: How to boost your child’s reading comprehension

In early years education, reading comprehension refers to a child’s ability to understand and interpret what is being read to them. It involves a specific set of skills, such as vocabulary understanding, word recognition, decoding (the ability to read some individual words), and question answering (the ability to ask or answer questions about what has been read to them).

The importance of early reading comprehension cannot be underestimated, as numerous studies over the past decades show that it lays the foundation for future outcomes at school, and has been linked to better self-regulation and social-cognitive abilities. In turn, these are known to support overall well-being, are conducive to learning and act as a protective factor for a range of early mental health challenges.

Early Years Education Early Years STEM Science Technology Engineering & Mathematics Enfield Nursery Hadley Wood Nursery Ofsted outstanding Pre-School Learning Reggio Emilia

Supporting your child’s learning at home: Ideas for developing early science skills

Young children begin to develop a sense of curiosity and start asking questions about the world around them at an early age. In fact, infants and toddlers are naturally curious and are constantly exploring their environment through their senses. As children grow and develop, they become more and more curious about the world around them and will often ask questions about how things work or why things happen. The first steps in scientific enquiry can be taken by fostering this natural curiosity and “systematic” investigation, that is, repeated and consistent exploration of a child’s environment.

There are many ways you can support and encourage your child’s journey in exploration. In general, it is important to provide your child with age-appropriate materials and activities, answer their questions no matter how basic or strange they may seem at first, and encourage them to make observations and ask more questions.

Open-ended resources are essential for nurturing children’s pre-science skills.
Early Years Education

Project-based learning in early years education: why is it so important?

Project-based learning is an educational approach in which children learn by actively engaging in hands-on projects. Children work on a project over an extended period of time, typically several days or weeks. The goal of the project is for children to learn new concepts and skills by applying them to the project, rather than simply learning about them through adult-led teaching sessions. Exploring the environment and encouraging investigation of their surroundings is a core element of the approach.

This past Autumn Term, we have been exploring themes of Light and Shadows in all aspects of learning. For instance, using shadow puppetry we brought stories to life as a group. The project was led by the children, their ideas, creations, and explanations of what they were doing were captured and used in a communal exhibition.

Storytelling using shadow puppetry, which was put together as a group project by the children (Autumn Term, 2022)
Cockfosters Nursery Early Years Education Enfield Nursery High Scope early years approach Montessori Ofsted outstanding Pre-School Learning Reading for early years Reggio Emilia Research on Early Years Development

Making marks, making meaning: the importance of mark-making in early learning

Children need to be able to experiment with making marks from an early age using a range of resources as well as their sense and their bodies. There is a wide set of skills that children need to master in order to be able to use mark-making tools effectively, such as dexterity and coordination, and purely cognitive skills like dealing with symbols. Parents, carers and teachers all need to get on board and become more fascinated by children’s mark-making journeys and provide a wealth of opportunities to celebrate achievements and development of these skills.


Early Years Education Early Years Foundation Stage High Scope early years approach Ofsted outstanding Reading for early years Reggio Emilia Research on Early Years Development

High Scope Approach – the importance of reflection

“What did I do today? Let me think”
Eloise, age 4

Focused Weeks

During our “focused weeks” this Summer Term we explored in detail a specific educational approach every time. As part of this process, we made a lot of progress in implementing more elements of the High Scope approach. This is one of the four core early years educational methodologies that we follow as part of our overall hybrid philosophy.