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Latest news

We are now accepting entries for this year’s Student Reflections Award [1] – closing date July 22nd 2019.


TACTYC One Day Conference and AGM 2019

 “You’re doing my head in!”

Happiness and wellbeing in the early years

Saturday 15th June 2019

International Convention Centre Birmingham

Broad Street | Birmingham | B1 2EA | UK

– Conference Workshops –

We return to Birmingham for our 2019 TACTYC One-Day Conference where we will focus on happiness and well-being in the early years [2]

The conference will begin at 9.15 until 4.30pm

Keynote speakers: 

Mine Conkyabir

Laura Earnshaw (My Happy Mind)

Sally Goddard-Blythe

TACTYC Conference 2019 offers a friendly environment where delegates learn together about state-of-the-art research and debates in the field of early childhood and engage in rich discourse and networking with early years colleagues from across the UK and beyond.

We warmly welcome your contributions to the 2019 TACTYC conference. Our workshops are a forum for early years’ colleagues to share their high quality research and practice in the field of early childhood. Whether you are a practitioner, student, advisor, consultant or academic, come and present your work at the 2019 TACTYC Conference. Call for Papers is here.  [3]

Choose from the conference themes of:
Young Children’s Physical Worlds
Provision for Well-being
Mental Health in Early Childhood

You can choose to present via ‘Research Briefin [4]g’,  ‘Discussion Forum Item [5]‘ or ‘Poster [6]

Whether you are an experienced conference presenter, have only presented on one or two occasions or have never presented at a conference before, your proposal will be welcomed. The closing date for applications is 15th May 2019.

Conference Fees are £75 (including refreshments and lunch)


We are delighted to tell you that we have been awarded Charitable Status as of now.  The Exec will have to get to grips with what all this means in the new year and our committee will be reconsidered then.  Currently we have six Trustees.  More news after our first meeting on the 9th January.


We have a new ‘Call for Papers’ on Early Childhood Education and Care in Latin America here [7] and on our Journal’s pages [8].  And we say goodbye to one of our long-standing Editors: Professor Pamela Oberhuemer has recently retired.  We wish Pamela well in her retirement and thank her most sincerely for all her work on behalf of the Journal and TACTYC.

The first Reflections paper of 2019…

Read Linda Withey’s paper about a project supporting parents to understand the role they play in young children’s language development through ‘Chit-chat’ everyday [9].


What a wonderful Conference … the hotel was magnificent and the Enterprise Centre Derby just brilliant! See the full report here [10].

Why do so few men work in the UK early years sector…and why should we care?

Dr Jo Warin and Dr Jeremy Davies have launched their two-year study GenderEYE (Gender Diversification in Early Years Education) – an international and UK based study, with a focus on recruitment , retention and support for men in the early years education workforce. This coincides with International Men’s Day [11] on 19th November. Worth a look ….?  [12]

Quality Assurance of CPD for Teachers

The Chartered College of Teaching [13], alongside the Teacher Development Trust and Sheffield Institute of Education, Sheffield Hallam University are undertaking a project jointly funded by Wellcome Trust and the Education Endowment Foundation to design and test a system to quality assure the provision of continuing professional development for teachers.

The online consultation closed recently but if you would like to respond, further information is available here. [13]


We shall be closing the TACTYC Current Account on the 31st March, 2019. This means that any subscriptions paid to that account MUST be changed to the Treasurer Account before that date.  We do want you all to be part of our campaigns and help us sustain pressure on governments and institutions to make excellent provision for early years professional development and young children, so WE NEED YOU!   Please amend your standing orders now please and ensure that any bank transfers are made into the new Account (see members only part of the website).


Mimi Tatlow-Golden (Open University) has written an excellent paper entitled ‘Big, strong and healthy’? Children, food and eating in the early years, and the role preschools can play, in which she encourages all practitioners to ‘support children and their families to grow not-too-big, very strong, and definitely healthy, by engaging in the evidence-based strategies’ outline in the Paper [14].  A must read.


We are delighted to announce the winner of this year’s Student Reflections Award is Megan Taddeo, a post-graduate student of the University of Winchester with a paper entitled ‘Listening to children creates Better Beginnings‘. Runner-up was Rachel Hingston from the University of Plymouth with ‘Two birds with one stone: How putting the value back into mealtimes can improve children’s communication and long-term health’. Megan’s paper can be read here [15].


We have a new book review about outdoor play with under 3’s – read it here [16]. And a new Reflections [17] paper about ‘In the Moment Planning’.


The notes available here  [18]describe some of the main discussion points between colleagues from TACTYC and the DfE at a meeting held on  13th July 2018 in response to the current draft ELGs being piloted over the next academic year.


Speaking at the Westminster Education Forum on 9th November, Professor Helen Bilton stated that “It is essential that the primary phase is adjusted to fit the early years phase. If you try to adjust the early years phase to fit the primary phase then you militate against a child’s developing self.  Early years education cannot be seen as the waiting room for proper education.”

Professor Bilton asked why the National Curriculum is not being adjusted “to fit the early years curriculum?”

Early years colleagues in attendance raised concerns about the lack of consultation and representation for the EYFS sector.


Please read this recently published article ‘The views of teachers, parents and children on the Phonics Screening Check: the continuing domination of politics over evidence’ by Margaret M Clark OBE [19]

Also see Education Journal (10 July 2018)  ‘Evidence based policy?’ [20]

BERA has just released its Report on Baseline Assessment, which is very well formulated – read it here [21].

Early Education has made a strong comment on the revised EYFS and ELGs – read it here [22].

MEMBERS:  Read our latest online NEWSLETTER HERE [23] 


TACTYC’s Book Series has added a sixth book to its collection: recently launched is Gina Houston’s book: Racialisation in Early Years Education: Black Children’s Stories from the Classroom. All the books in the series are available from Routledge [24]. These include: Exploring the Contexts for Early Learning: Challenging the School Readiness Agenda by Rory McDowall Clark; Building Knowledge in Early Childhood Education: Young Children are Researchers by Jane Murray; Early Childhood Education and Care for Sustainability by Valerie Huggins and David Evans and Places for Two-year-olds in the Early Years: Supporting Learning and Development by Jan Georgeson and Verity Campbell-Barr.  Look out for Natalie Canning’s book on Children’s empowerment in play, due out later this year.