NCETM - Numberblocks Episodes

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Numberblocks: materials to support Early Years and Year 1 teachersMaths Generic

Numberblocks, first broadcast in January 2017, is a pre-school BBC television series aimed at introducing children to early number.

Snappy animation and loveable characters combine with engaging storylines to gently introduce concepts of number to support early mathematical understanding.

The NCETM materials use each episode as a launch pad. They are designed to assist Early Years (and also Year 1) practitioners to confidently move on from an episode, helping children to bring the numbers and ideas to life in the world around them.

The materials are designed to be used in conjunction with the Numberblocks episodes. They highlight and develop the key mathematical ideas that are embedded in the programmes.  Each set of materials comes in the form of a PowerPoint file which can be found here.

A list of all episodes and links to each episode is availbe here.

Communication to schools on the implementation of Relationships Education, Relationships and Sex Education and Health Education

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The Department is committed to supporting all children to grow up happy, healthy and safe, and to provide them with the knowledge they need to manage the opportunities and challenges of modern Britain.  That is why, all primary age children will be taught Relationships Education and Health Education and all secondary age children will be taught Relationships and Sex Education and Health Education.

The new curriculum is due to begin in September 2020 but in light of school closures the Department has issued the attached letter with further details of how schools need to prepare.

  • Schools who assess that they are prepared to deliver teaching these subjects and have met the requirements set out in the statutory guidance are encouraged to begin delivering teaching from 1 September 2020, or whenever is practicable to do so within the first few weeks of the new school year.
  • Schools that assess that they have been unable to adequately meet the requirements because of the lost time and competing priorities should aim to start preparations to deliver the new curriculum and to commence teaching the new content no later than the start of the summer term 2021. The subjects will still become compulsory from 1 September 2020. However, schools have flexibility to decide how they discharge their duties effectively. If a school is unable to begin teaching until summer term 2021 they will need to decide how much of the content they will be able to cover and should still be able to demonstrate how they will cover the entirety of the curriculum in the future.

The first of a series of 14 modules to support schools to implement the new curriculum is now available here.

Further details can be found on the .gov website here.

Support for school staff: talking with children about illness and death during COVID-19

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In response to the current situation, University of Oxford have developed the attached guide to support COVID 19school staff with talking to children about illness and death, specifically in the context of COVID-19.  As background, also attached below are two short journal articles from the Lancet which discuss the importance of communication with children and highlight some key aspects of their developmental understanding of illness transmission and death.  This work draws on well-established research and internationally recognised expertise in the communication of life-threatening illness and death to families and children. The University of Oxford led a Lancet series (2019), including an international expert group which developed a framework for healthcare professionals supporting communication.

All the resources that they have produced about communicating with children can be found here and are freely available to distribute and share.  We hope these will be of relevance and interest to the schools in your region and would welcome support in ensuring their dissemination.

  • Lancet June 2020 - Talking to children about illness and death of a loved one during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Lancet March 2020 - Protecting the psychological health of children through effective communication about COVID-19


EEF News Alert Issue 85: 5 June 2020

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The new EEF News Alert, Issue 85: 5 June 2020 is now available here.EEF Logo

34,500+ now subscribe to the EEF News Alerts: thank you.  Please do forward this link to colleagues you think may be interested.  They can subscribe directly here

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