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Newsletter - April 2021

Welcome to The Learning Institute's April newsletter!

In this month's issue: Student reflections  |  Congratulations  |  Learners on film  |  Erasmus Project Updates  |  Teacher placements  |  Early years - did you know...  |  Mental health in the early years  |  Wild Tribe Conference  |  Upcoming events

Plus, find out more about our programmes, including degrees, teacher training and apprenticeships.

To provide feedback on this newsletter, please click here.
Student Reflections
It's certainly been a busy time for all recently. However, every once in a while it is good to take the time to reflect.

Here are the thoughts from some of our students on their experiences thus far:

Evie (FdA Early Years Professional) -  1st Year Reflections

Sarah (FdA Learning and Education) - Expectation vs Reality
                                                            - Studying during the Pandemic

Nicolle (FdA Learning and Education) - Mini-Research Project and future thoughts
Our Level 6 students on the BA (Hons) Professional Practice and BSc (Hons) Child and Adolescent Mental Health top-up degrees have also been reflecting on their experiences as they come the end of their undergraduate journeys.  A lot has changed since they first started - Claire and Bernadette tell us more.
Read more
Congratulations to BA Professional Practice student Charlene, who has been shortlisted for the Sustainability Award at the Worcester Students' Union Student Choice Awards!  We will be keeping our fingers crossed when the winners are announced on Tuesday 25th May.

You can read more about Charlene's experiences as part of the audit team for the University of Worcester's Responsible Futures accreditation here.
Learner experiences on film
As part of our ongoing recruitment campaign, we have been working with two of our current learners and a videographer to promote the courses we offer.
Inclusive education student Kate, who is in the second year of the foundation degree and also one of our ambassadors, was interviewed on film so that she could share her experiences of studying with The Learning Institute.She talked about how much she has been enjoying the course content, and you can read more of her reflections here.

Kate went on to discuss how she balances family life with the demands of a full-time degree, acknowledging that it can be a juggle but that finding something that was for her and her personal development was extremely rewarding.

We were also lucky enough to visit a local primary school to see another of our learners in action.  Juliet is currently one of our Teacher Apprentices, having completed her foundation and top-up degrees with The Learning Institute, all whilst continuing to work in her setting where she originally started as a mealtime assistant.

“There's lots of challenges… as a full-time mum with three growing boys and working full-time and studying full-time… I have questioned myself at times but I know the reward is worth all of the hard work.”

Juliet knew early on that she wanted to be a teacher, but life got in the way - until she found the courses on offer at The Learning Institute.  She gave an honest account of the challenges of working, studying and being Mum to three active boys, but emphasised that it was more than worth it to achieve her ambition. 

Keep an eye on our social media channels – the videos will be out soon!
Erasmus+: Research Projects

April has been a busy month for the research team at TLI, with three different research projects now underway. Whilst the concluding themes for our Erasmus+ Adverse Childhood Experiences project are being finalised through the collation of all our resources, the focus of our Erasmus+ Natural Schooling project are only just beginning to cement themselves.
We are also very excited to announce our involvement in a new project run by our colleagues in Spain at the University of Santiago titled Digital Technology, Imagination, Creativity and Entrepreneurship for High Quality Teaching (DTICEQT). The project aims to aid teachers in developing their digital teaching skills and help identify areas of learning where creative digital teaching could improve a student’s experience. In an increasingly digital world that has only been exacerbated by the challenges posed by the pandemic, we believe this training will be invaluable to all current and future teachers.
Lastly – have you registered for our event ‘Changing Our Response to Childhood Adversity’ on the 30th June yet? With the event not far away now, excitement on our end is definitely building for what looks to be a stimulating and productive day of talks and workshops, as well a walk-through of the incredible collection of resources we have both collated and created over the past three years. Although the finalised schedule is yet to be released, we are delighted to announce that Aidan Phillips from the WAVE Trust will be joining us as an official speaker. The WAVE Trust has done some exceptional work in researching and raising awareness of ACEs, and we can’t wait to have Aidan share his experience as the Trust’s Trauma-informed Communities Project Manager. For news on the full schedule, keep an eye on Twitter and our event registration page – it’s coming very soon!
As always, if you are interested in getting involved with any of our projects you can email us, follow us on Twitter, or visit our website.

Find out more
Teacher Placements

After ably supporting their placement schools during lockdown, the TLI trainee teachers have relished the opportunity to be teaching full classes face to face. Both Primary and Secondary trainees across Cornwall, Devon and Dorset have been showing commitment and enthusiasm throughout this tricky time. We are thrilled with their progress and continued curiosity as to the best way to teach and support pupils in our schools. Primary trainees have welcomed an opportunity to start their second placements to learn about different primary phases and to experience a different setting (something that has been tricky to do this year!)

This picture shows our primary trainees enjoying a Wild Tribe Learning in the Natural Environment session. This was an exciting opportunity to train face-to-face in the great outdoors. Well done to all!

Learn more about Teacher Training
Early Years - Did You Know?

An image of an adult talking to a young child on a toy tractor... Take a look at this short video and see how much fun conversing with a baby can be.

If you would like to hold more conversations with children and help them to develop their communication skills, you may be interested in our Early Years foundation degree course which explores all of these ideas in more depth.

** Please note we do not own the rights to the video and that is subject to the beholder.

FdA Early Years Professional
Early Years CPD
Mental Health and Wellbeing
in the Early Years
A new report recognises the importance of mental health and wellbeing for both children and staff in the Early Years.  The report, their challenges are our challenges from the Anna Freud Center, begins by highlighting the importance of the first few years of life for future wellbeing:
The early years of a child's life are uniquely important in terms of their development. We know that the first five years are the building blocks for a child’s wellbeing and ability to thrive. The early years can have a direct influence on how brain architecture is formed and how our young children start to develop their understanding of how to interact with the world.
Read more from the report
Wild Tribe Outdoor Learning Conference
Our colleagues from Arena held their Wild Tribe Outdoor Learning Conference on Wednesday 31st March.

Over 50 teachers recently attended our Wild Tribe Outdoor Learning training conference at Sterts Outdoor Theatre near Liskeard.  The theatre is an outdoor test centre for the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), so we were fortunate to be able to use a Covid friendly site for our training conference.

Learn more about the Wild Tribe Outdoor Learning Conference
Studying for a Foundation or Top-Up Degree
At The Learning Institute, we currently offer four full-time foundation degrees relating to education, health and children's services, consisting of academic study integrated with relevant work-based learning. These foundation degrees are accredited by the University of Worcester.

Foundation degrees at The Learning Institute (September 2021 start): These foundation degrees are built around a core of modules relevant in each degree, such as those related to academic study skills and research, along with inclusion and diversity. The relevance of these modules to all degrees allows inter-related practitioners to study together and we are currently recruiting students for all of our teaching venues across the South-West and London.  

We're also recruiting for our newly validated BA (Hons) Advancing Practice top-up degree.  With pathways in early years, inclusive education, learning and education, and mental health and wellbeing of children and young people, this top-up degree has been designed for those who want to advance their practices for effective working with children, young people, their families and communities.
Image of a desk with a laptop, mug, notebook and felt tip pens, with the quote "I began to realise I enjoyed studying and was surrounded not only by supportive tutors who are happy to help and ensure we are completely confident with any assignments we are undertaking, but also empathetic students who are always there to ease each other’s worries."
Find out more
Studying for an Apprenticeship

When you hear the term ‘apprenticeship’ you might think of 16-24 year olds gaining valuable job-specific skills and experience.

However, did you know that there are apprenticeship opportunities for students at undergraduate level and postgraduate level?

If you’re new to a role within education, why not talk to The Learning Institute about how your employer could use the apprenticeship levy to develop your skills and knowledge with one of The Learning Institute’s Level 3 – 7 apprenticeship programmes in business administration, education, early years, improvement and leadership.
Business Administration | Early Years Educator | Improvement Practitioner | Senior Leadership | Teacher | Teaching Assistant
Image of Apprenticeships leaflet
Image of a teacher and pupil, with a quote: "The support and guidance received as an apprentice through The Learning Institute, was timely, challenging and effective, with individual and school circumstances taken into consideration."
Learn more about our Apprenticeship opportunities
Student Referral Scheme
Did you know that current students of The Learning Institute could receive a £100 reward for recommending us as part of our Student Referral Scheme?
To register for this referral scheme, you will need to email Caley with your contact details and your current group, along with the name of the person whom you have recommended. Thank you for your support!
Learning Institute events

Tuesday 11th May (6.00 - 7.00pm): Get Into Teaching - Information Session
Saturday 15th May (10.00 - 11.00am): Get Into Teaching - Information Session
Wednesday 30th June (9.00am - 4.00pm): Changing Our Response to Childhood Adversity

Other events

Saturday 1st May: May Day
Tuesday 4th May: Star Wars Day
Friday 7th May: Space Day
Wednesday 12th MayNurses' Day
Sunday 16th May: National Children's Day
Tuesday 18th May: International Museum Day (IMD)
10th - 16th May: Mental Health Awareness Week

May is also National Walking Month and National Share-a-story Month!

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