Tapestry Survey 2020: Supporting Remote Learning and Connecting with Families
by Anna Pedroza on September 16
3 min read:
Better communications with parents and carers and access to technology essential – what we discovered from our first Tapestry survey
At the end of the last academic year, we asked everyone in our Tapestry community, and beyond, to complete a short survey. We asked questions about engaging with parents and carers, about managing future lockdowns, and how technology might enable and support.
We were delighted that more than 200 educators from early years settings and primary schools responded to the survey and we wanted to share some of the findings.
Engaging and supporting all families
Encouragingly, 83% of respondents reported that they would engage with parents differently following lockdown and are more confident to approach parents and carers to discuss their child’s learning and wellbeing.
However, with future lockdowns and partial closures likely in the coming months, 95% of respondents felt better communication was needed with parents and carers who faced barriers in engaging with settings or schools. Four fifths of respondents also felt families still needed better access to technology and more support to help their child with learning at home.
Rebecca Swindells, owner and co-manager of Blue Door Nursery, Seaford, responded to the findings saying: “I’m not surprised that early years practitioners feel confident about talking to parents and carers. We have, as a sector, always understood the value of excellent parent partnerships. We know that children do best when they are surrounded by adults that know them and understand their needs. However, with partial closures a very real possibility in the upcoming months we need to be sure that all our communication lines are strong. If we can’t chat face to face then using technology enables us to support children when they are away from nursery as well as enabling families to show us what they are doing at home.”
Technology and remote learning
Almost all respondents want to see greater use of technology to help stay in touch with parents (92%) and 87% felt that they would use technology to stay in touch where classes, or bubbles, need to be quarantined.
Following the lockdown, educators are more likely to use technology to support children’s learning with 91% reporting they would share resources and activities and 83% planning to support remote learning.
80% feel they are more likely to use technology in their practice, however, almost three quarters (70%) of respondents believe staff need more training in remote learning to support children.
Dr Helen Edwards, co-founder of Tapestry and former early years practitioner felt this was particularly important and said: “Practitioners and teachers have had to get to grips with lots of new technology in the past few months and I’m not surprised that they need more training. Supporting remote learning requires new skills and expertise, the technology is the enabler, but it’s staff that make it effective.”
As settings and schools open to more children, virtually all respondents (93%) felt that outdoor learning would become even more important. There was also a keen desire to focus on children’s wellbeing and mental health with 90% of respondents hoping this would be a priority.
This is the first year Tapestry has undertaken a survey and we feel the results are really insightful. Thank you for getting involved and responding.