The recent Minds Matter Survey (Early Years Alliance, 2018) highlighted some of the issues providers face on a daily basis which cause low wellbeing and The Children’s Society notes that ‘children’s overall well-being is at the lowest it has been in recent years’ which should be a wake-up call for everyone who works in early years.
Minds Matter Survey: https://www.eyalliance.org.uk/minds-matter-survey
Children’s Society: https://www.childrenssociety.org.uk/what-we-do/research/what-is-child-wellbeing.
Low provider wellbeing leads to well qualified and experienced childcare professionals leaving the jobs they love or providing less than outstanding childcare because they are stressed and unhappy but feel trapped in their jobs, often by poverty or low self-esteem. Low child wellbeing leads to children who are not engaged, motivated or thinking in their play. This often exhibits as poor behaviour which exacerbates already low practitioner wellbeing. Taken all together, this will inevitably lead to poor outcomes for children because staff will not be focused on their jobs.
We can turn this around if we all work together – we can support staff wellbeing during supervisions, staff meetings and in their everyday working lives; childminders who work on their own can take time to look after themselves better and pay more attention to their own wellbeing; we can plan to support, for example, children’s resilience and emotional awareness which will raise their wellbeing.
Even Ofsted have jumped on the ‘raising wellbeing’ bandwagon, adding staff wellbeing and staff workload warnings to the Leadership and Management section of the new inspection framework and the Early Years Foundation Stage recognises the importance of the key person system for attachment which ultimately raises children’s wellbeing.
Inspection framework – https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/early-years-inspection-handbook-eif
EYFS – https://foundationyears.org.uk/eyfs-statutory-framework/
It was World Wellbeing Week in June so I am a little late with the launch of my new e-book ‘Wellbeing in the early years’ – I blame the new inspection framework which kept me busy through the summer.
World Wellbeing Week: https://www.awarenessdays.com/awareness-days-calendar/world-wellbeing-week-2019/
However, better late than never in my opinion! You can find more information about wellbeing for providers and children in my latest e-book 71 ‘Wellbeing in the Early Years’ available on my Knutsford Childminding website.
My website: http://www.knutsfordchildminding.co.uk/
If you have any questions, please ask.
Chat soon, Sarah