Children are learning already before birth. By 17 weeks gestation, the foetus will have learned how to co-ordinate simple motor movements on the basis of the neurological feedback received from gravity and pressure from the uterine wall. By 29 weeks, the unborn child will be able to discriminate differences in language sounds through listening to the tones coming from the mother’s voice.
I don’t have to cast my mind back too far into my public sector career to remember a time when the interplay between the early years, health and wellbeing, education and long-term employment was not as well recognised as it is now, in theory or in practice.
During pregnancy, birth and the early years much of our attention is centred on mother and baby, but we shouldn’t lose sight of the important contribution that fathers can make or the challenges they face.
I was first introduced to the Family Nurse Partnership when I was 19 years old, 13 weeks pregnant, alone, scared and sleeping rough. I was sleeping rough to avoid my family who had no idea I was expecting until I was 34 weeks.
Play and learning can be perceived as opposites, particularly for older children: The school day is often divided into lessons, where the learning takes place, and ‘play time’, which is presented as something different to – break from – the learning. But a true understanding of children’s development shows us that play IS learning.
We know that the early years are a critical opportunity for building healthy, resilient children, with positive early experiences shaping outcomes throughout the life-course and contributing to a healthy, thriving society.
Since the original Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) study conducted in the United States in 1998 1, extensive research has continued to reveal how ACEs affect health later in life as well as the well-being of those experiencing them
It was wonderful to welcome David Olds back to London last month and to talk about ADAPT. He was on a whistle-stop tour to Europe, also visiting our colleagues delivering FNP in Scotland, Northern Ireland, Norway and Bulgaria.
The New Mum Star is a tool created in collaboration with Triangle Consulting as part of the ADAPT project. The tool aims to facilitate structured and collaborative decision-making between clients and nurses about flexing the FNP programme content, adjusting visit intensity and graduating clients early. Sue Mercer, Family Nurse Supervisor from West Sussex, blogs about her experience of taking the tool from paper to practice