Early Years Podcast

Inclusive practice in the Early Years

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Episode 2: The voice of the child with Dr. Sharon Colilles

Reading Time: < 1 minute
Throughout this episode, Shaddai Tembo is joined by Dr. Sharon Colilles, to further explore the topic of inclusive practice in the early years. In this episode, Sharon and Shaddai talk all things observation and reflection, to enable practitioners to incorporate each child’s ethnic and cultural experience in the context of the setting. 
Focusing on the voice of the child and how important tuning into the child’s needs are, Shaddai asks Sharon to share her thoughts on how practitioners can learn and adapt their practise based on children’s own knowledge and language.

Tuning in 

Sharon explains the power of practitioners listening and tuning into the child’s needs, which is achieved through observation. Observation is key because as children are playing, they become deeply involved. By observing this, practitioners will gain a better understanding and knowledge of the voice of the child and these observations will support inclusive practice needing to be implemented. 

Inclusion, Equality and Equity

During this episode, Sharon and Shaddai share how vital inclusion, equality and equity are as an ethos and as part of the curriculum. Sharon shares practical guidance and tips for how practitioners can encourage a more inclusive ethos within settings. For example: 

  • Addressing and developing own knowledge to eliminate inadvertent discrimination. 
  • Focusing on open-ended questioning and observing. Open-ended questions rather than closed discussions allow the children to explore and express themselves, feel valued, included, which in return will only positively impact their learning.  

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