Bedtime Reading...

Time to yourself?  Here are some links that will get you thinking!  Scroll down to find your category of interest...

sarah mckinlay signature


Bedtime Reading...

Time to yourself?  Here are some links that will get you thinking!  Scroll down to find your category of interest...

sarah mckinlay signature

Starting School

When should my child start school?

The debate continues...When should summer-born children start school?

By law a child in the UK does not have to be in school until the term after they turn five...This tricky decision is yours to make!

Will my summer-born child always be disadvantaged?

An interesting view and, yes, often true as some children are almost a year younger than some of their peers.  However, every child is different and many summer-born children fly through school.

Do we start school too early in the UK?

What do you think?

Alternative Approaches to Early Years Learning

Educating children in the Early Years in Sweden:

Certainly food for thought...An emphasis on play and relaxation, starting formal school later and an understanding of child development - Has this country got it right?

Exploring the Montessori method of teaching:

Montessori understood how children develop.  She individualised learning, allowing children to initiate and construct their learning through their own real experiences.  However, does this approach promote social interaction and can it be incorporated into our current curriculum and state educational system?

Time to Concentrate, Heavy Psychological Reading!

A psychological perspective on the relationship between language, thinking and knowledge in young infants:

‘It is often thought that language provides the concepts that we use to organise our thinking and knowledge.  If that is the case, then it would seem to follow that young infants, before they learn language, cannot think or have knowledge.  How has recent evidence from psychological research challenged this view?’

pdf icon  Language and Thinking by Sarah McKinlay (PDF Download)

Re-reading this piece of writing has illuminated the importance of never underestimating the power of a young infant’s mind. Children are sponges from the day they are born.

Exploring how social influences can impact on children’s learning from varying psychological perspectives:

‘Using examples of children’s everyday experiences, consider the role of social influences in the different forms of children’s learning that psychological research has identified.’

pdf icon  Social Influences and Learning by Sarah McKinlay (PDF Download)

In an ideal world a child needs a balance and mixture of social influences to maximise their learning opportunities.

One psychological explanation towards understanding behavioural and emotional difficulties in childhood:

‘With the use of examples, discuss the value of transactional models for explaining the development of behaviour and emotional difficulties in childhood.’

pdf icon  An Explanation of Childhood Behavioural and Emotional Difficulties by Sarah McKinlay (PDF Download)

This is just one perspective on attempting to explain and understand behaviour and emotional difficulties in childhood.  However, each context and individual is different so it is difficult to apply this perspective generally.  Research in this area is keep your eyes open!

The EYFS Curriculum

The Characteristics of Effective Learning:

This article gives some practical and real examples of how playing and exploring can enhance learning:

Art activities

Here are some lovely ‘hands-on’ art activities you could try at home; perfect for children in the Early Years:


Tips on how to encourage positive behaviour in young children

Here are some great tips to help you understand and overcome some common pre-schooler behavioural issues:

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