Kinderly is plugging the gap in early-years professional development with a new affordable learning platform aimed at making the use of training and career enhancing opportunities much more accessible.
Simpleweb invested in and helped to scale-up the original Kinderly platform (recently renamed Kinderly Together) back in 2016, which helps childcare practitioners to create a secure digital timeline of children’s progress, development and learning journey based on the government’s early-years framework – and encourages parents to play an active role in their child’s early years education.
The new platform, named Kinderly Learn, came about following feedback from the early-years sector, as well as existing users of Kinderly Together.
Despite continuous professional development (CPD) being a requirement for early-years practitioners, local authorities suffering major funding cuts means support and training to these professionals has become thin on the ground. Early-years practitioners, some of whom were already reaping the benefits of Kinderly Together, needed something that they could use to help them with their own development, as well as that of the children they work with.
Kinderly’s CEO and founder Geraint Barton (pictured right) explains: “Early years practitioners work really hard, so we wanted to help motivate them by making their training and CPD fun and easy to do after a long day looking after children.
“Many training courses can be inaccessible and expensive so we wanted to ensure we created something, through the use of technology, that would overcome this challenge. We also wanted to help dispel any perception of early years practitioners as ‘glorified babysitters’ by showing how committed they are to their CPD.”
After being awarded a grant from the Ufi Charitable Trust, the team began the necessary research with early-years professionals to make sure the platform delivered something they would use and that would help them to reach their full potential. They then built the new platform over the last 18 months.
With the platform now fully up and running, early-years practitioners can now drop in to Kinderly Learn to access short ‘learning bites’ in a variety of formats including animations, quizzes, videos, fact sheets and much more.
Our goal is to help improve outcomes for all children regardless of their background or circumstances
Subscribers can take part in expert webinars or use the forum to ‘ask an expert’ when they need trusted advice or support. The platform also tracks users’ learning so that they can share their commitment and progress with both parents and Ofsted.
Early-adopters of the platform are already offering up high-praise with Bristol-based user Carolyn Hill, an early years teacher, stating: “It’s great to get lots of legislative information in easy to understand and bite-sized amounts so I can keep up-to-date.
“It’s accessible at the time you choose – I can dip into it and see what’s new – so you’re not tied to learning at the same time every week.”
Geraint adds: “Ultimately, our goal is to help improve outcomes for all children regardless of their background or circumstances and, through the use of technology, to help early years practitioners perform at their best.
“We believe that both of Kinderly’s products, Kinderly Learn and Kinderly Together, can deliver this support and will benefit our target audience which will drive Kinderly’s growth, impact and help deliver better outcomes for the children.”
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