What gave you the inspiration for Nurturing Childhoods? How did it all start?
I have supported practitioners and families looking to give children the best start in life for many years. But with so much information available, the most well-meaning parent is often confused, with websites offering, at best, contradicting information, or at worst, advice that creates lasting damage. I also know how frustrating it can be when the latest parenting trend seems to undo all the hard work you and your team are doing.
We know the importance of rich and meaningful experiences, and the difference we make to a child’s well-being, learning and development through the smallest changes. But this only comes from understanding the importance of every moment and the impact of every action. Through Nurturing Childhoods, I want to bring this knowledge and understanding to families, with support to make differences that can last a lifetime.
Is your advice for early years practitioners as well as parents?
Absolutely. The most powerful gift we can give any child is to ensure all the adults around them know the experiences they need, from day one. And the partnerships we have with families is instrumental in this, otherwise, rather than experiencing any stable sense of security, children become confused. To support this, I have also developed the Nurturing Childhoods Accreditation. Mirroring the format and content of the parenting courses, settings are supported to develop their practice through targeted reflection and documented action plans, structured around their own needs.
What makes Nurturing Childhoods different?
Firstly, Nurturing Childhoods supports parents and settings with a unified approach, rooted in child development, child psychology, health and well-being, years of experience and applied research. This is organised through modules that look at understanding and engaging with children; managing emotions and behaviour; raising happy, confident and resilient children and giving them every opportunity to engage in learning and thrive in school.
Through its unique format, talks are structured with: Knowledge - learning how children develop and the processes they are undergoing; Understanding - how actions, comments and decisions affect these processes, now and in the future; and Support - advice you can trust, and use with confidence and consistency. Each talk can be watched online, repeated as often as needed and comes with an array of supporting handouts and documentation.
What is next for Nurturing Childhoods – what are your aspirations?
It is my firm belief that every child has the right to experience and develop their full potential. But to do this, we need a unified vision of what that means. Through Nurturing Childhoods, I want to celebrate the magnificent growth and development occurring during the early years, to support an understanding of the behaviours and emotions being experienced and promote the knowledge that every decision we make impacts children’s trajectories, their potential, and the belief they have in themselves.
My aspiration for Nurturing Childhoods is then to see it become the benchmark for practice and parenting – rooted in the knowledge and understanding our children need us to have. With packages of support designed for parents and families, and an accreditation for settings and childminders, every child can be surrounded by this level of unified understanding of who they are and what they need.
About the author:
As Founder of Nurturing Childhoods, Dr Kathryn Peckham is a passionate advocate for children’s access to rich and meaningful experiences throughout their foundational early years. Delivering online courses, training and seminars, she works with families and settings to identify and celebrate the impact of effective childhood experiences as preparation for all of life’s learning. An active campaigner for children, she consults on projects, conducts research for government bodies and contributes to papers launched in parliament. Through her consultancy and research she guides local councils, practitioners, teachers and parents all over the world in enhancing children’s experiences through the experiences they offer. A highly acclaimed author and member of parliamentary groups, Kathryn also teaches a Masters at the Centre for Research in Early Years.
Get in contact with Kathryn by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org