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Early Years Scotland Conference 2015

Almost 300 delegates gathered in Glasgow on Saturday 3 October for ‘Building Our Ambitious Early Years Workforce’, Early Years Scotland’s annual conference.


The conference, expertly Chaired by the broadcaster and journalist Kirsty Wark, marked the launch of the Marte Meo approach in Scotland. The founder of Marte Meo, Maria Aarts, described how the unique approach can break down sometimes highly complex communication, learning and development theories so that early years practitioners can develop practical ways of working with children and help parents to enrich their children's experiences within the home learning environment.

The other keynote presentation came from Dr Margy Whalley of the renowned Pen Green Research Centre in Corby. Dr Whalley gave a fascinating and inspirational account of the Centre’s work with children and families, and showed wonderful, and at times moving, film footage shown of adults reflecting back to their own childhood play experiences in early years settings.

Aileen Campbell MSP, the Minister for Children and Young People, told the conference that the Scottish Government remains committed to investing in the earliest years of our children’s lives to ensure that Scotland truly becomes ‘the best place to grow up’.

A panel presentation and discussion session involving Henry Mathias of the Care Inspectorate, Maureen Mallon of Education Scotland, Kathryn Chisholm from the Scottish Government, and Glasgow City Council’s Early Years Manager Heather Douglas, focussed on working with children under three and the importance of having a highly skilled, professional workforce to support the expansion of Early Learning and Childcare in Scotland.

Delegates were also entertained by the wonderful Big Noise Govanhill Children's Orchestra.

Watch Maria Aarts and Dr Margy Whalley talking to Early Years Scotland about their key messages

Watch the conference panel presentations and discussion

The following conference presentations are available to view:

Dr Margy Whalley - Working with children 0-3: Building a Creative Workforce
Heather Douglas - Working with Two Year Olds and Nurture in Glasgow Maureen Mallon - Building the Ambition Henry Mathias - Inspecting and Improving Outcomes Kathryn Chisholm - The Workforce Review