Taking a balanced approach to screen time.
Speech, Language and Communication
Speech, Language and Communication are vital to your child’s development and provides a good foundation for learning, reading and writing. It helps your child develop friendships, communicate their needs and make sense of the world around them.
Parents/carers can help this by being a good role model and by providing stimulation.
- Speaking clearly, with age appropriate language and making eye contact can all help your child observe and copy your behaviour.
- Take time to listen carefully to what your child is telling you, correcting sentences if necessary.
- Comment on and describe what daily activities you are doing for example, describe the vegetables you are chopping for dinner or describe the clothes you are hanging on the washing line.
- Read books together and talk about the story, maybe discuss a different ending.
- Sing songs and nursery rhymes together.
- Play describing games and guessing games like ‘What am I’ or ‘What’s in the bag’.
- Encourage your child to role play with their toys and to tell you about what they are playing.
For more ideas and more information please click on the links below:
Talk, Listen, Cuddle Essex County Council Home - TLC (tlc-essex.info)
The Communication Trust I Can website I CAN, the children's communication charity
Lots of parents/carers have found Eric’s Guide to Potty training very helpful.
10 Steps for Healthy Toddlers
The pre-school provides care for children and promotes health through promoting oral health and hygiene, encouraging healthy eating, healthy snacks and tooth brushing.
- Fresh drinking water is available at all times and easily accessible.
- Sugary drinks are not served.
- In partnership with parents/carers, toddlers are encouraged to drink from an open free-flowing.
- Only water and milk are served with morning and afternoon snacks.
- Children are offered healthy nutritious snacks with no added sugar.
- Parents/carers are discouraged from sending in confectionary as a snack or treat.
- Parents/carers are advised to stop using dummies/pacifiers once their child is has settled into the pre-school.
- Staff follow the Infant & Toddler Forum’s Ten Steps for Healthy Toddlers.
Teaching Good Dental Hygiene
We teach the child to have an understanding of what is good for our teeth and what is bad for our teeth. We arrange activities involving play teeth where children are shown the correct way to brush using timers and toothpaste.
Protecting Toddlers from Tooth Decay
For more oral health tips for your child click on the link below and select download publication for the “Bright Smiles from the very beginning” publication.
Choking Hazards - Food Safety Advice
Little Doves is committed to teaching the children about a healthy lifestyle encouraging the children to make right food and drink choices to develop healthy eating practices. We believe snack and lunch times should be happy, social occasions with enjoyable positive interactions encouraging good communication and language skills.
We provide nutritionally sound snacks which promote health and reduce the risk of obesity and heart disease that may begin in childhood. We ask parents/carers to provide a healthy nutritious lunch.
We follow the main advice on dietary guidelines and the legal requirements for identifying food allergens when planning snacks based on the four food groups:
- meat, fish, and protein alternatives
- milk and dairy products
- cereals and grains
- fresh fruit and vegetables.
Our typical morning snack menu is:
- Savoury carbohydrate snack, for example, toast/rice cakes/crackers/pasta/bread sticks/pitta bread
- Savoury protein snack, for example, baked beans/cheese/ham/humous/chicken roll
- Selection of fruit & vegetables, for example, apples/oranges/grapes/strawberries/melons/bananas/pineapples/blueberries/carrots/cucumber/peppers
- Semi-skimmed milk and water are available throughout the day
- A small selection of healthy cereals are available if a child would like them
Our afternoon snack is fruit and sometimes a small biscuit or ice pop.
Staff aim to include food diets from children’s cultural backgrounds, being aware of any religious restrictions and the food preferences of some ethnic groups and so providing children with familiar foods whilst introducing them to new ones.
Staff provide a vegetarian/vegan alternative when meat and fish are offered and make every effort to accomodate food preferences.
All labels are checked for allergens and staff are aware of any children with allergies or intolerances.
All staff show sensitivity in providing for children’s diets, allergies and cultural or ethnic food preferences.
Our snack menu will change to reflect the topics we are doing at the pre-school, for example, Chinese New Year, Bonfire Night, Easter.
Every Friday there is a cooking activity for the children to take part in, for example, making fruit kebabs, carrot cake, gingerbread men, fruit smoothies, making their sandwich with a choice of fillings.
Below are some links to fact sheets for parents/carers of toddlers:
Health Eating for Toddlers
Meals, Snack and Drinks for Toddlers
Why Toddlers Refuse Food
How to Manage Simple Fussy Eating Toddlers
Common Nutritional Problems in Toddlers
Physical Activity in Toddlers
Children should be active as it is vital for their physical and mental health and development. At Little Doves we encourage a wide variety of active play, both structured and unstructured, and physical activity both inside and outside in our play areas. Children are encouraged to dance, climb, run, skip, ride, jump and balance on our apparatus and equipment. On Friday’s we have an external educator visit the pre-school to teach the children balls skills.
Physical Activity and Play for Toddlers