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Out of School Clubs
Out of school settings can be set up and run from a variety of different environments. The provision may be managed by a private provider, school or committee. Each setting will have a particular aim to serve the needs of different groups of children, parents and the community. Regardless of the differences between each setting, children’s play must be the key element and objective of the staff and children involved.
“Play is freely chosen, personally directed, intrinsically motivated behaviour that actively engages the child”. (Best Play, 2000)
The Early Years Team has a dedicated Early Years consultant for playwork. You can contact her for bespoke training and consultancy as well as support visits and advice.
Some areas we can support you with are……
Meeting the Statutory Requirements
Visit the Ofsted website to check if you need to register and to ensure you are meeting the requirements of the Early Years or Childcare register.
Playwork Principles and EYFS
How to meet the EYFS through playwork. Visit our section on the EYFS:
The EYFS and Playwork
Some websites to support your setting:
Early Years Quality Standard (EYQS)
As an Out of school club you are able to access the EYQS process. Please see EYQS section for more information.
Leadership and Management
Visit the 'Young in Herts' website for the latest training opportunities:
Check the EYFS Statutory Framework and Ofsted to ensure you are meeting ratios appropriate for your setting
Are your policies in place and up to date?
Check the Ofsted website for the most up to date information
Policies must have:
Procedures – must have:
Procedures / policies – should have;
Safe recruitment – check the HSCB website for details on safer recruitment:
Play is essential to children’s quality of life and exploration of their culture and can be defined in the following ways:
The websites below offer practical ideas and guidance on play
Playspaces and Opportunities
A common misconception is that playworkers play with children. In reality playworkers enable children to extend their own play and they enhance the play space so that it is a rich play environment. Playworkers have a key role in protecting spaces where children play so that children, young people and their parents have confidence they can play there.
Role of the playworker
The playworkers core function is to create an environment which will stimulate children’s play and maximise their opportunities for a wide range of play experiences. A skilled and experienced playworker is capable of enriching the child’s play experience both in terms of the design and resources of the physical environment and in terms of the attitudes and culture fostered within the setting.’
Planning for play
It is critical that play providers ensure they plan for play to happen, this requires that they are both respecting children's rights and culture and allowing children to grow and develop through play. Best Play specifies this can be achieved by setting out seven play objectives: objectives that should apply to any provision which aims to offer children good play opportunities.
The Seven Play Objectives (Best Play, 2000)
Objective 1: The provision extends the choice and control that children have over their play, the freedom they enjoy and the satisfaction they gain from it.
Have you read the Participation Toolkit and considered how you consult with children?
Do you provide risk and challenge for all your children within their play experiences?
Risk assessment – There needs to be an element of common sense applied to risk assessment and safety. Simply taking away all risk is not helpful as children need to take risks to learn how to manage risks. Providers must strike a balance between assessing risk and the benefits of offering children more challenging play opportunities. Please see Ofsted's Requirements for Risk Assessments Factsheet
Transport/collection of children - Consider your procedures for any pick up or collection and contact your consultant and Ofsted for advice.
The Wider Community and Partnerships
Some questions to consider…