Written for anyone working in the field of early years education and care, this book encourages students and practitioners to consider their own practice and to examine practice in a wide range of early years settings. The four sections link closely to the principles of the Early Years Foundation Stage, and support the reader in developing a critical and reflective approach to their own work.

Issues covered include:

Play in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) in England; The Foundation Phase in Wales; Safeguarding children; The healthy child; Leading a team at a Children's CenteR; How caregivers are working with the EYFS; Leading and managing a multi-agency workforce; Continuing Professional Development for early years practitioners

Ideal for those working towards Early Years Professional Status (EYPS), this book is also a must-read for students on any early years course, and will help the professional development of all practitioners working with the Birth to Eight age range.

Distance Learning and Professional Development

Distance learning and professional development

Chapter Objectives

This chapter examines research with early years students at the Open University on the impact of reflective thinking and practice on their professional development. It considers the interaction and collaboration the students have with their colleagues and how this supports a community of practice. A central theme of the chapter is how the students feel and respond to change and how talking and writing about their experiences enhances their professional practice. This also demonstrates the importance of student-centred learning.

I have had to un-learn all that I had learnt before … It's been quite a journey for me, really stressful sometimes. I suppose I used to just do things without really thinking. Now I question everything ...

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