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Tapestry Newsletter January 2021

by Jack on January 29

Hi Weavers,

Welcome to the January 2021 newsletter. All of us here at Tapestry HQ wish you a hopeful new year.

Earlier this month, as the new lockdown started and children and families began to learn at home again, Tapestry experienced the highest traffic we have ever recorded. In our peak hour on the busiest day, we had 107K observations uploaded.

Although we are configured to be able to raise capacity to meet demand, and did so at this time, the exceptional level of activity as educators and families were making connections via Tapestry, revealed a deeper issue. This caused many of you to experience issues ranging from slowness to a stall in functionality. Since then, Tapestry has been stable, and it is our developers’ highest priority to ensure this remains the case.

We have a couple of places you can go to if you have any questions now or in the future. The first is our Status Page. This shows you if there are any current errors on the Tapestry side as well as updates about any scheduled maintenance or current issues that we are aware of. The other place to go to is our Twitter feed. A lot of people reached out to us on Twitter during the server issues, and we tweeted with ongoing updates.

If you experienced any issues with Tapestry, we are truly sorry. We understand how frustrating this must have been and we thank you all for your continued patience.

 

The Updated Android App

Last week we released a sizable update to the Android app. With it comes some bug fixes as well as additions you might find useful.

  • You can now view Activities and Memos that have been created on the browser version. These will appear with a little “A” or “M” next to them to differentiate them from Observations which use an “O”.
  • You can also reply to Activities directly with an Observation of your own. You’ve always been able to do this on the browser version, but this is new to the app.
  • We have made it easier to switch accounts via the app. This is especially useful if you are set up on multiple different accounts and find yourself having to log in and out of them all the time.

You can see a page of FAQs about this update here.

RE Flag

Another addition we have made this month is a flag for RE. Flags are a way to tag your observations and reflections and make it easier to find something specific you’re looking for.

Since RE doesn’t have an explicit programme of study, it couldn’t be added as a framework like the EYFS for example. Instead, any observations or reflections you make which involve RE can now be flagged as such, making everything easier to organise. You can filter by Flags if you ever need to find them again.

Relatives Loggin On

We have updated our relative tutorial for Login Troubleshooting. This now includes an easy-to-follow flow chart to support relatives with logging on to Tapestry. This is ready to share with your parents and carers.

The Home Learning Page

With home learning continuing to be more prevalent than ever, we have added a new page to our website. You can find it here.

This page contains loads of helpful resources for staff and relatives alike. It includes a video on the best features for home learning, a Tapestry training session with Ben, and a video from yours truly on how to use Activities.

Maslaha

While we are on the topic of home learning, I’d like to share a fantastic video series called Learning Through Play. The four short films are available in Sylheti, Urdu, Polish and Somali and showcase 20 simple play activities that parents can do cheaply and easily at home with their early years children.

The videos have been created by Maslaha as part of their Schools with Roots project. You can see part one on their website here and the full playlist of videos can be found here.

Reflective Teaching

Being a reflective practitioner is an integral part of working in the education sector. We are huge advocates of reflective practice at Tapestry, and we released the “Reflections” feature to support educators with this aspect of their role.

Helen – our Director, and Jules – education advisor and content editor, along with Rebecca Swindells, nursery owner and independent early years consultant (and formerly an FSF colleague!), recently contributed to a book about reflective practice. It’s called Reflective Teaching in the Early Years and you can find a copy of it here.

Designed for trainees, it includes evidence-based guidance on key early years issues, as well as discussions of the theories that inform practice.

Payments

If you wish to pay for Tapestry by cheque or BACs, please can we remind you:

Cheques – should be made payable to ‘The Foundation Stage Forum Ltd’ and NOT Tapestry or the Early Years Foundation Stage Forum

BACS – we moved our service provider for our banking in October 2019 and our bank is now HSBC sort code 40 18 22 / Account no 42445565

Our old bank account with Lloyds will be shut soon so payments made to that account in error will not be processed.  If you need further information, please email the finance team on bacs@eyfs.info.

If you do not deal with finance in your setting, please ensure this information is passed to the finance team so they can make sure their records are up to date. Thank you.

 

Thank you, as always, for all the hard work you do for children and families. See you next month.

 

 

Jack

Product Support Technician and Education Advisor

Jack started his career in education as a volunteer in a Brighton-based Charity for children with motor disorders. After which he was hired as an assistant conductor. During his time there, he studied at the University of Brighton to qualify as a primary school teacher. After a short stint as a supply teacher, Jack got his first job teaching Year 6. He remained in that role for a few years before moving to Year 4.
Jack joined Tapestry in August 2019 after many hints from his former housemate and now manager, Emily. In his Product Support role, Jack can be found answering customer emails and offering Tapestry advice on the phone. As part of the Education Team, you'll find him writing articles, recording podcasts and offering words of educational wisdom while drinking mugs of coffee.