Case study – Sure Start teachers, Newcastle

Sure Start Teachers,

Who are you and what do you do?

Sure Start Teachers working for Newcastle City Council and based in the Community Family Hub children’s centres. We support the Private, Voluntary and Independent childcare provision across the city areas. This includes visiting settings, providing resources and delivering training courses for nursery/playgroup practitioners and managers and childminders. Our focus is on improving the quality of provision for all settings especially around children’s Learning and Development. We also support the Early Years teams in the Community Family Hub who deliver sessions and support to parents.

Which products are you using?

We currently use the Siren DVDs Observing Child Development. In particular the Observational Sequences for 2, 3 and 4 year olds. The most useful one recently has been the Two Year Old at Home and Nursery. Exploratory play has also been particularly useful as we have a focus on provision for 2 year olds at the moment, especially those receiving the 2 year old funding.


How do you use them?

We use individual clips from the DVDs as part of our training courses for practitioners to practice making observations of children’s learning to help improve their own skills. This has included identifying children’s next steps in learning, planning and assessment. Also observing the adult interactions with children to help practitioners and managers improve their own practice.


Who do you use them with?

Practitioners and managers from PVI childcare provision, childminders and Early Years practitioners employed by Newcastle City Council, Action for Children and Barnardos in the Community Family Hubb.


What problem did using Siren’s products solve for you?

Being able to do first hand observations as part of training, without having to video our own clips and seek copyright and parental permission, etc.
The Siren films are also clearly organised so we can find appropriate clips for age group or type of learning.
The notes and booklets also provide some guidance about what to look for in the clips which saves some time when preparing training. Although we still need to link them to current EYFS documents such as the Early Years Outcomes.

Siren's reply: Thanks for this suggestion. We'll look into connecting them with recent EYFS documents.


What would you do without them?

We would either have to run training without the practical examples, create our own, or look for appropriate clips on You Tube.

Would you recommend us to a friend or colleague?

We recommend them to settings to use, although the smaller organisations such as playgroups and childminders might not have the funding to use on purchasing or downloading for what might be one off work with their staff.

Siren's reply: Did you know you can now rent all of Siren's products. This is a very affordable way to access our products, especially if you want them for one off training work with staff. Prices start from £7.99.