By far the greatest influence on a child’s early development are their caregivers. Parents and carers are the best people to encourage growth and development from a child’s earliest days.
This is why at Home-Start South Warwickshire we have launched our PEEP courses, to provide advice, tips and ideas for parents and carers to enhance what they already do at home with their children.
PEEP is a parent and child course developed by the charity PEEPLE, who support parents and children to learn together. The course, which is run by PEEP-trained HSSW staff, aims to:
Develop sensitive and responsive relationships between parent and child through talking, listening, playing, singing and sharing books and stories together
Enhance early childhood development through topics and activities around early literacy, early mathematics, communication and language
Encourage development of the home learning environment to enable parent and child to continue learning and building their relationship at home.
Our PEEP courses are tailored to the families attending, so each one will be different. As a group, the grown-ups choose a topic from each of the 5 strands of development, based on their child’s needs (Early Mathematics, Early Literacy, Language and Communication, Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Health and Physical Development).
We then incorporate the children’s interests into these sessions to create engaging and repeatable activities to enhance their learning, both in the sessions and at home. So, we can use a little girl’s love of dinosaurs to introduce early mathematical language - ‘the T-Rex is on top of the volcano’, ‘the stegosaurus has 5 spines’. Or a little boy’s fascination with fairy tales to explore different ways of playing and learning – dressing up as a prince and role playing, playing with small world toys to recreate a favourite story. Through these activities parents and children can learn together and build a sensitive and responsive relationship.
Our small, close-knit groups help to develop, not only the relationship between parent and child, but also build connections with other families through peer support, something that has been difficult during the on-going pandemic. Many families have felt isolated over the past two years, so our small groups help to build social connections, in a safe, friendly and respectful environment.
Previous PEEP-ers have said:
“The PEEP course helped fill in gaps in my knowledge of child development and, at the same time, boost my confidence that I am doing the right things to help my children develop.”
“Interacting with other children of a similar age was amazing for my daughter, as she doesn’t get many opportunities to meet children…this really helped us both.”
We run a number of courses throughout the year for families with children aged between 1.5 - 2years. Each session is an hour long and each course runs for 6 weeks.
For more information about PEEP or to find out about upcoming courses, please contact Emma Gurdag on 07907 616 922 or firstname.lastname@example.org.