I have talked to a lot of early years practitioners as part of my research. They often say that they don’t really know what resources are available or how they can be used in their setting. At the action research group meeting in January we went to Openzone in South Tyneside. As well as being a great venue they gave use access to their collection of resources. The group was able to play with the resources and share ideas for how they could be used. We also had copies of a great little booklet produced by Carol Allen and Claire Graham, School Improvement Advisors, in North Tyneside. Produced for tts this is more than the usual catalogue.
Alongside each resource there are ideas and suggestions for how it could be used (you can see the sort of thing it contains on the tts blog). The group used this as inspiration and tried to come up with suggestions for some of the resources they saw. I will be posting separately about the resources we discussed.
The resources they especially liked were easy to use, robust, flexible or multi-functional and would support the curriculum. One of the devices the group especially liked was the Big Track Supermouse, a large mouse that would be easier for young children to manage than a traditional mouse.
There were some resources that they did not think would be appropriate, reasons included:
- too easy to damage or chew
- too noisy for a busy classroom
- hidden charges e.g. having to buy recordings of stories on top of an audio device
- practical considerations e.g. how easy it was to charge devices and whether the children would be able to do this independently, audio devices which pick up too much background noise, and how easily young children with small hands would find it use the device
The group agreed to share information about resources they had in their settings, this will be published on the blog.