The best place for young children to start being active is at home, therefore supporting parents/ carers is crucial to enable young children to make the most of being active all day and every day.
By working closely with parents and carers you canensure that they're:
- aware of the importance of physical activity for their children – and themselves
- able to support their child to be physically active
- aware of activities they can do with their children.
It will also help you to develop a positive partnership with parents/ carers. There are a number of ways in which this can be encouraged.
- Provide an opportunity to discuss physical activity related issues within the childcare setting with parents/carers before the child begins attending the setting.
- Make daily activity timetables available to parents/carers. If possible, a pictorial and written display in a prominent place would stimulate discussion between parent/carer and child.
- Go through trackers and learning journeys with parents/ carers.
- Promote the availability of activity ideas within the childcare setting. Many parents value ideas of how to entertain their child at home. For example, through the use of 'Play Bags' where parents are invited to take home bags with equipment in and ideas on what they can do at home during the day and at weekends.
- Provide parents/carers with clear information regarding what activities their child has taken part in each day, and what they enjoyed, didn't enjoy.
- Invite parents/carers to share ideas of being active, e.g. activities that they have taken part in the local area or ideas of what they have done at home.
- Invite parents/carers into the childcare setting to play with their child.
- Provide parents/ carers with access to information of where they can be active in the local area, e.g. play spaces and parks.
- Involve parents/ carers in the development of your physical activity/ development policy/ review.
- Invite parents/ carers to attend a parents meeting where they can have an input into the settings development, i.e. what they would like to see more of.
- Organise a special physical activity event to involve families of your setting.
- Provide ideas of how families can be active together – children are more likely to enjoy being active if they can see their parents having fun while being active.