Creating Opportunities for Young Learners: A Vision
Part of the City’s Vision for Children and Learning
Leeds: A child-friendly city with learning at its heart
In Leeds, we want all children and young people to have the best start in life, to grow up happy and healthy, and to attend, achieve and attain.
We want all our children and young people to live in a child friendly city that is the best city for learning.
The 50 Things app and activities have been promoted as ideas for engaging parents in their child’s learning. From the outset, our focus has been on learning at home and embedding learning and fun into a parent’s interactions with their child.
Implementing 50 Things Across Leeds
50 Things was launched in Leeds in 2018, as part of “Baby Week”, an annual city-wide event which helps to bring together and celebrate services from across the sector.
In the following year, 50 Things presented at the opening ceremony of “Baby Week” to re-launch the initiative.
50 Things had a strong presence at events throughout the week which were aimed at professionals and families.
With over 100 events taking place for families during Baby Week, the 50 Things app was promoted on all of the accompanying literature. We were delighted to see a surge in people downloading and promoting the app following this week.
Promotion of 50 Things has been driven in partnership with a variety of teams and services. Internal staff teams that work directly with families, children’s centres and council owned nurseries, other childcare provision and primary schools across the city – as well as colleagues from the 0-19 Public Health Integrated Nursing Service – have all worked with us to bring 50 Things to the community.
50 Things has also been promoted to parents and settings through Twitter and Facebook. This has been undertaken at no cost so far, but strong links have been made with influencers in the city who share or tag 50 Things into their posts.
The Importance of Partners
Beyond these partnerships, our 50 Things team has also developed strong links with the Library services through the city-wide Year of Reading initiative. 50 Things is an integral part of story time and rhyme time sessions run through the libraries and will be promoted further through the new Story Buses. These buses are designed specifically for Under-5’s and will visit communities across the city.
The library service in Leeds has an extremely high social media presence and this has proved very helpful for promoting 50 Things to a wider audience.
Support online…and offline
Packs of resources are available for settings to purchase and resources are also being sent to families who are entitled to funded childcare places for under 2’s.
Digital and printable resources have been shared during Covid-19 across many services including social workers who are working with vulnerable families across the whole city.
The Impact on Learning
50 Things and the wider learning culture
Feedback from schools and children’s centres has been positive. In schools and nurseries, 50 Things is often applied across all areas of the curriculum. Parents are encouraged to engage with the activities through “homework”.
Teachers inform us that the posters and displays in the classrooms generate great conversations between children who are eager to share their experiences with one another, thus showing improved self-confidence, language skills and communication.
50 Things has also enabled stronger relationships with parents and carers for schools who are using the activities for home learning.
Senior Governor Support Officer
Leeds City Council
If you would like to discuss this case study please contact Andrea Layzell using the following contact details:
Bradford BD8 9QW