Lambeth College - #StaffStory: How nursery practitioner, Donna, supported children and parents during the lockdown
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My name is Donna Ebanks, I have been a nursery practitioner with the Lambeth College nursery for 16 years. I can honestly say I love my job. Everyday is different. Working in a multi-cultural nursery is brilliant, I learn new things as well as the children everyday.

AHAS7661Being in this field of work, you need certain qualities. This has enabled me to be an effective practitioner when working with children, parents and carers. As a result, I have positive relationships with my key children’s parents.

During the 2020 lockdown, I spoke with my manager Pamela Hammond and deputy manager Marie Ribbe, and said I had an idea that I wanted to explore with the children in the nursery. Marie gave me the encouragement to further explore my creative side.

I have always been told, when I read stories to the children, the stories come alive. Seeing the children’s engagement is priceless.

SO LOCKDOWN CAME... March 2020

We already had a home learning strategy in place however, working from home was going to be a challenge to provide the same level of parent engagement via email. We also had no access to resources which we usually send home e.g. books.

I decided to utilise my time working from home to create a new strategy to support parents with their children's learning at Home. Not too long but stimulating, unique and personalised for the child.

I came up with the idea of producing short stories via YouTube. But these are not ordinary stories these stories are catered for the individual.

Due to the relationship I have with my little learners and their parents, I know their likes and their dislikes. So, I thought I would put these all in one and come up with these stories. I wanted the children to have some sort of normality and continuity to nursery life so seeing a regular face would help with the process.

S saw Donna's video and she recognised her straight away! I asked her "who is she?" and she said Donna!

- Parent, February 2021

I wanted the stories to be fun and interactive for both parents and children. I set it up so that parents could join in or leave the children to watch the video while they're doing their coursework.

I took into account children's mental well-being as well as the parents’. In the videos I incorporated breathing & physical exercises as well as songs and stories. The feedback I got from the parents was positive. My biggest critic was my grandson who gave me the thumbs up, he really enjoyed the stories, so he helped motivate me to do this. Thank you Kason!

Check out the videos on my YouTube Channel!


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