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Welcome to Caring for young children

Welcome to Unit 6: Early Childhood! In this video, Carly will explain what we’ll cover in this Unit.
Hi everybody, welcome back. This is unit 6. In this unit we’re going to cover early childhood development. So we’re going to learn all about the social and emotional development of really young children. Starting with newborn babies going all the way up to age 3. There is a lot of learning and growing that happens during these early years. As you can imagine, there’s a big difference between a newborn baby and a 3 year old. So to guide us through all of this, we have some amazing experts joining us. We’re going to meet Dr. Elizabeth Byrne, Tilly Kirby and Dr. Paul Ramchandani from the Pedal Research Center at the University of Cambridge in the UK.
To start us off, we’re going to be working with Elizabeth and Tilly. Hi you two. Hi, I’m Elizabeth and I’m Tilly. That’s right, we work in PEDAL. Pedal stands for Play in Education, Development And Learning. It’s based at the Faculty of Education here at the University of Cambridge. The work that we do in PEDAL helps us understand play in early life and playful approaches to early childhood development. We also look at social play and early social and emotional development, OK - I love this. Can we get started? Almost before we dive right in, we thought we’d start with a warm up activity. We’d like to start by drawing an outline of your brain.
We provided an example outline below, or you can draw it however you like. 00:01:31.500 –> 00:01:37.000 We’d like you to have a think about the social and emotional skills and activities that you’re good at and that you enjoy doing.
Whatever they might be, we’d like you to have about drawing them inside your brain. It might be that you like to do exercise, like running or dancing to unwind and relax. Or maybe you like board games as a way to test your problem-solving skills. We’re going to have a go too. Are you ready? Carly, I’m ready. Let’s do it.
So here’s mine. I drew a sewing machine and an ear and some dice. What about you Tilly? So I’ve drawn some plants with the flowers, sunshine, book, and a phone. What about you Carly? What did you draw? So I drew a bicycle at sunset, the ukulele and a giant mug of coffee. Amazing, lots of different people have different ideas about what’s important to them and what they’re good at. If you want to click into the Padlet discussion board using the link below, upload a picture and tell us and the other people on this course about what you’ve drawn and why.
OK, Elizabeth and Tilly give us the overview. What can we expect from Unit 6? We’re going to start right at the beginning thinking about how young children start developing and learning in their first years of life. We’ll also think about how social-emotional learning or SEL begins right from birth. We’ll also think about how stress and change can affect learning and development in the early years. Young children are really resilient and with the right current support, stressful experiences can actually be important learning moments. Supportive caregiving help children feel safe and secure so they can continue learning and playing. Speaking of playing, we’ll recap the five characteristics of learning through play that you learned about in Unit 2.
Together we’ll think about how these fit into early childhood and what learning through play might look like in infancy and toddlerhood. We’ll wrap up this unit, with you having a go at designing your own playful interaction, that supports social-emotional learning in early childhood. This will help you apply the knowledge that you learn in this unit when interacting and playing with your own children or the children that you work with.

In this video, Carly will explain what we’ll cover in this week. She will also introduce you to Dr. Elizabeth Byrne and Natalie (Tilly!) Kirby, researchers based at the Research Centre for Play in Education, Development and Learning (PEDAL), at the Faculty of Education, University of Cambridge.

Carly, Elizabeth, and Tilly have a fun activity to kick off this week. Enjoy!

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Coping with Changes: Social-Emotional Learning Through Play

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