The Education Network for Waltham Forest
Supported by Waltham Forest

Home Learning

Early Years Foundation Stage

Working in partnership with parents is of central importance in effectively delivering the EYFS. Parents are 'children's first and most enduring educators' (Curriculum Guidance for the Foundation Stage, QCA 2000), therefore forming partnership with parents and carers is crucial if early years practitioners are to plan effectively for a child's learning and development. In view of this, a genuine commitment to working co-operatively and in partnership with parents should be the core feature of any high-quality setting and should impact on every aspect of practice.

'Research shows that high quality experiences in the early years, including a good home learning environment, have a significant positive impact on children's social, emotional and cognitive development and, therefore, their progress at school and into adult life'.

What is the Home link book?

The Home link book is used to collate photos samples and observations made at home by the parent/carer and the child. This process is on-going. Children with their parents use a scrapbook to stick pictures and photos in. Practitioners/ Key persons work with the parents encouraging them to write anecdotes about what the child has been doing at home. Practitioners/ Key persons can suggest further activities (age appropriate) that will further support the child's learning along with encourage parents and their child to enjoy being together.

Provider Influence on the Home Learning Environment

This research was commissioned by the Department for Children, Schools and Families (now the Department for Education) from the Family and Parenting Institute in partnership with the Campaign for Learning, to help identify what nurseries and other early years settings could do to better support parents to develop their children's learning at home. The aim of the study was to help identify which strategies were most effective in supporting parents to give their child the best start in early home learning.

Useful links

Parents, Early Years and Learning: Training guide - What activities create a strong home-learning environment?

Early Home Learning Matters: a brief guide for practitioners

Every Day's a Learning Day - this book is for parents and carers of children aged 0–3 years and is designed to highlight that daily life is bursting with many learning opportunities for children right from the moment of birth. Whether you are tidying up, getting dressed, going shopping or preparing a meal, you can find valuable learning possibilities for children everywhere you look.

Every Day's a Learning Day - book for parents and carers of children aged 3–6 years

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Last updated: 
Tuesday, 8 March, 2016
Last updated: 8 March 2016 by Barry Fong