BECERA 2019: Learning Beyond the Classroom Conference Pack


As has become tradition, we are delighted to offer you this new Learning Beyond the Classroom Conference Resource Pack for  BECERA 2019.


Featuring exclusive OPEN ACCESS to selected journal articles (courtesy of EECERJ, CREC and Taylor & Francis), as well as videos, infographics, blogs, resources and reports on learning in the home, learning in public spaces and places, and learning for life from various experts and advocates in the field of early childhood education.


We hope you enjoy them and please feel free to share these fantastic resources with your colleagues!



OPEN ACCESS EECERJ Articles: Enjoy FREE ACCESS to selected journal articles on learning beyond the classroom, exclusively for  BECERA 2019




‘Remote parenting’: parents’ perspectives on, and experiences of, home and preschool collaboration - Tuula Vuorinen (Volume 26, Issue 2, 2018) 


Parents’ perceptions of children's literacy motivation and their home-literacy practices: what's the connection? -  Mesut Saçkes, Sonnur Işıtan, Kerem Avci & Laura M. Justice (Volume 24, Issue 6, 2016)


The wonder project: an early years arts education project with Traveller mothers and their children Carmel O’Sullivan, Jacqueline Maguire, Nóirín Hayes, Seoidín O’Sullivan, Lucie Corcoran & Grainne McKenna (Volume 26, Issue 5, 2018)


Parents’ play beliefs and engagement in young children’s play at home Xunyi Lin & Hui Li (Volume 26, Issue 2, 2018)


OPEN ACCESS Practitioner Research: Enjoy FREE ACCESS to selected practitioner research from CREC students

CREC has identified a selection of practitioner research which it feels have a particular value (normally commended by the academic markers) and, with the agreement of the authors, have made them openly available for other early years practitioners and researchers to access, and hopefully use, to inform their own practice and academic study.




Practitioners and parents; living in a 'third space'? A study of perceptions of 'British Asian' parental involvement in their children's nursery education - Nicola Smith (PhD Thesis, 2011)


Academically Successful Children raised in an economically stressful environment at aged 3 and 4: An affirmative exploration of narratives and perceptions - Laura Edwards (MA - Dissertation, 2015)


'Involve me and I will understand'; The reflections of the participants in a creative art project in a children's centre drop-in 

- Janet Law (MA - Dissertation, 2010) 


A case study of movement and physical development affordances of outdoor play - Caroline Duffy (MA - Research Methods, 2014)




[RESEARCH] High Achieving White Working Class (HAWWC) Boys Project: Home Learning Environment Information Sheet

A key outcome of the CREC HAWWC Boys project was to develop a strategy to document and disseminate the knowledge gained, in a variety of formats and forums, to achieve maximum impact for underachieving white young boys.


This information sheet summarises the main facts, findings and action points from the HAWWC Boys project for ‘Home Learning Environment’.



[JOURNAL ARTICLE] The Importance of Play in Promoting Healthy Child Development and Maintaining Strong Parent-Child Bonds: Kenneth R. Ginsburg, Official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics (Volume 119, Issue 1, 2007)

Despite the benefits derived from play for both children and parents, time for free play has been markedly reduced for some children. This report addresses a variety of factors that have reduced play, including a hurried lifestyle, changes in family structure, and increased attention to academics and enrichment activities at the expense of recess or free child-centred play.


[VIDEO] Alike: Animated short film by Daniel Martínez Lara & Rafa Cano Méndez

In a busy life, Copi is a father who tries to teach the right way to his son, Paste. But… what is the correct path?


[BOOK] Young Children Playing and Learning in a Digital Age: Chapter 8 - Children, Families and Technologies

In this chapter from one of the books in the EECERA series 'Towards an Ethical Praxis in Early Childhood', Christine Stephen and Susan Edwards explore the everyday experiences of children and their families in the digital age.
Considering the research findings about the ways in which children’s experiences are shaped by family values and attitudes and their family’s cultural practices; the authors explore the social and cultural context in which young children are growing up and encountering digital technologies and new media, including the ways in which their relationships with siblings and peers make a difference to their experiences.







[FREE TRAINING] University of Washington's Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences: I-LABS Training Modules

The University of Washington's Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences (I-LABS) Outreach and Education team has designed an online library of free training modules that are intended to present the latest science of child development to early learning professionals. The modules are accompanied by a variety of supplementary resources, like discussion guides and parent handouts, and include sections on early interactions, learning through imitation and attachment.


[PODCAST] Early Childhood Perspective Podcast: #17 - Working in Partnership with Families

In this podcast episode, host William Cook tackles three different ways early childhood practitioners can work in partnership with parents and families.



According to child psychologist Dr Kimberley O'Brien, having time outside is "absolutely essential" to the development of a child. Dr O’Brien gives the example of having worked in youth male detention centres in both Australia and Scotland as proof that time outdoors is crucial to the health of any human. Of her time in Scotland, Dr O’Brien notes the fact that boys within the centre did not spend much time outside, which meant  “there was so much more aggression, so many more cases of staff being attacked and boys trying to escape”.


“In Australia, when the boys had outdoor time for five to six hours a day playing sport, they just transformed from these neglected, underweight kids to super sporty, healthy-looking boys. There is so much value to outdoor time.”





[TOOLKIT] Brighter Futures Together: Involve children and young people in your community

The UK government wants young people to play a more active role in ensuring services are better. Their aim is for every child and young person, whatever their background, to have the support they need to be healthy; stay safe; enjoy and achieve; make a positive contribution; and achieve economic well-being.

This factsheet provides you with the essential information to enable you to involve and work with children and young people in your local community.


Artist Thomas Dambo used recycled materials to install 6 giant wood sculptures in hidden spots around Copenhagen. The giant sculptures are a group effort, with local volunteers helping Dambo assemble the works. Made from 600 wood pallets, a shed, and an old fence, the scavenged wood comes together to produce incredible hidden giants.
Each is named after a volunteer and can be found using a map Dambo prepared or a poem engraved into stones near the sculptures. “It invites the viewers to go on a treasure hunt, not only to see the sculptures but also to discover hidden gems in nature,” Dambo shares.



[COLLECTION] Earlyarts UK: Museums & Galleries Research

A collection of research exploring the value of museums and art galleries for early years children, including this toolkit from Renaissance North West which provides a series of wonderful ideas to enhance young children's learning and development by engaging with objects and artworks in museums and art galleries.











[COLLECTION] Earlyarts UK: Theatre Research

A collection of research exploring the impact of theatre on early years children, including this longitudinal research project by Wendy Schiller which sought to explore and document children's perceptions of live art performances and the impact on children, their teachers and school communities.


[ARTICLE] Community Playthings: Put the pencil down and go outside: The importance of nature in the early years – Kathryn Solly

In this long-form piece, Kathryn Solly discusses issues surrounding outdoor play, children's early interactions with nature and why going outside is so important in the early years.



Simply ‘playing out’ – having the freedom to step out of your own front door and kick a ball about – is nothing new. There are still some streets and estates where this happens and that’s great. But the reality is that most children have far less freedom to play out than their parents or grandparents had. Yet though the world may have changed for today’s children, their need for free play close to their homes remains just as strong.




[PUBLICATION] Trying Together: If Kids Built a City


If kids built a city, how would they design it to spark curiosity, wonder, and joy?

This publication explores how we can build cities that work for children…











[ARTICLE] i News:  The children using the coast as a classroom 

A growing number of nurseries close to a coastline are realising the benefit of taking their children to the beach as part of their weekly routine, a happy consequence of the success of forest schools all over the UK, which has seen outdoor play and education in a woodland setting become highly desirable among parents looking for a nursery.


Children from Woodland House and Archfield House nurseries in Bristol, during ‘beach school’ sessions at Severn Beach (Will D Purcell)


[PROJECT] Cities Alive: Designing for Urban Childhoods

A child-friendly approach to urban planning is a vital part of creating inclusive cities that work better for everyone. The amount of time children spend playing outdoors, their ability to get around independently and their level of contact with nature are strong indicators of how a city is performing, not just for children but for all generations of city dwellers. If cities fail to address the needs of children, they risk economic and cultural impacts as families move away.
Through 40 global case studies, 14 recommended interventions and 15 actions for city leaders, developers and investors and built environment professionals, the report shows how we can create healthier and more inclusive, resilient and competitive cities for us to live, work and grow up in.




[INFO SHEET] Kids Matter - Australian EC Mental Health Initiative: Why culture matters for children’s development and wellbeing


Humans are cultural beings. We learn to communicate and understand our world through the context of our languages, traditions, behaviours, beliefs and values. Our cultural experiences and values shape the way we see ourselves and what we think is important.  When individuals are part of a cultural group, we learn the ways of that culture (e.g. behaviour and beliefs), which enable us to feel like we belong to our community.


Cultural perspectives also influence how we parent, how we understand children, how we help them grow up and how we teach them new skills.


Why culture matters for children's development and wellbeing | Kids Matter




[BLOG] My Recycled Classroom: Reuse to Enthuse Blog: 10 Green Ecobrick Bottles Hanging on the Wall

Sustainability and incorporating it into Early Years provision and practice, provides an opportunity to take learning well beyond the classroom. The people behind My Recycled Classroom are currently in the process of establishing the UK's first fully recycled classroom at Beecroft Garden Primary School in South East London.



[ARTICLE] Guardian Opinions: When Beryl, 86, met Scarlett, four - love and affection across the ages

This article by Yvonne Roberts explores the Channel 4 show about a retirement village in Nottingham which shows both young and old flourishing.


"[W]hat hits most at the heart in this series is not how the older people blossom as their capabilities are encouraged but what allows the four-year-olds to flourish. They grow in company that generously invests time and interest, undistracted by social media, mobile phones and iPads, crafting old-fashioned friendships."


UKEdChat Podcast: #13 - Teaching Creative Thinking

Listen to Bill Lucas discuss his book (see above) and passionately advocate for schools to teach pupils how to think creatively so that they can lead meaningful and fulfilling lives.



[BLOG] Play England: Play holds key to inclusion

Play is the best way to offer inclusion, says Karen Kewell, co-founder of #ToyLikeMe, an organisation that was set up to call the global toy industry to account on its failure to represent the 150 million disabled children in its toys.


Jacobs Foundation Video: The Benefits of Fantasy Play - Sonja Perren

In this talk, Sonja Perren talks about the benefits of free play – and in particular pretend play, which helps to promote the social-emotional development of children and has a positive effect on relationships with their peers.



[RESOURCE] ZERO to THREE: Books about Feelings for Babies and Toddlers

Books are powerful tools that can help children make sense of difficult feelings and provide learning for life. This reading list for infants and toddlers by ZERO to THREE includes books to help very young children navigate complex feelings and experiences, including anger, fear, grief and loss, and divorce.





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