EYFS: Language of Learning – a handbook to provoke, provide and evaluate language development

EYFS: Language of Learning – a handbook to provoke, provide and evaluate language development

By Alex Bedford, Julie Sherrington

Published 15 Sep 2023

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Early language deficits affect too many pupils on entry to nursery, reception and school settings, negatively impacting not only children's engagement with curriculum content, but also their self-regulation and mental health. Drawing on Joan Tough's research and inspiration, Alex Bedford has reignited and reimagined her systematic language development framework, so that every child in an early years setting has the opportunity to build a love of language that radiates understanding, excellence, ambition and clarity.

Co-authored by Julie Sherrington, EYFS: Language of Learning explains the vital influence that physical development has on vocabulary development. The book offers practical guidance on what language development is, what to look for and how to provide support. Important cognitive and neuroscience research is clearly explained to help school settings embed the best of what we know about how children learn.

EYFS: Language of Learning gives teachers and practitioners a holistic, accessible and powerful toolkit. Alex and Julie's brilliant worked examples showcase how the language development framework can offer precision and progression within the learning conversation. The book directly complements the ShREC approach and provides clear guidance on how to develop conversations using evidence-informed frameworks.
With more than 29 years of experience in education as a teacher, headteacher and leading adviser for school improvement, Alex Bedford now supports Unity Schools Partnership and its Research School, working across the UK and abroad. Alex is the creator and author of the highly acclaimed Pupil Book Study series (originally published in 2021) and has worked as an associate consultant for the Institute of Education, UCL. His curriculum writing and resources have been highly praised by Professor Rob Coe and by Clare Sealy (head of education improvement, Guernsey).

You may be surprised to learn that Alex did not engage well at school and spent most of his secondary schooling in the 'remedial stream'. His parents were even told not to 'waste' tutoring money on him. Alex's career took an interesting journey through the Youth Training Scheme in an entomology lab and several years of employment in food technology labs, where he worked on the viscosity of jam in Jammie Dodgers and recipes for Marks & Spencer. Further education led Alex to eventually train as a primary school teacher. He has never looked back. His rule for school is simple: teach with excellence and never write anyone off. According to all the SEND experts Alex has worked with, he channels his ADHD superpower to his advantage, so he can be the most positive and productive person he can.

Husband to Becky (a phenomenal Reception teacher) and proud father of Jack and Finn, Alex is called to adventure and is regularly drawn to the sea and mountains.

With more than 22 years of experience in education as a teacher, headteacher, school improvement consultant and early reading expert, Julie Sherrington now leads early years for GLF Schools, a large trust with 35 primary schools and 20 nurseries. She also works for Greenfields Education as an early years lead and lead evaluator.

Julie is passionate about getting early education right to improve the life chances of every unique individual who enters our schools. She is often found reading and talking about the profound impact of communication, language and physical development on all other aspects of learning and life, and she has a healthy obsession with oracy.
  • Author Alex Bedford,Julie Sherrington
  • ISBN 9781398390058
  • No. of Pages 128
  • Format Paperback
  • Publication Date 15 Sep 2023