Ever since having my son Ethan Bear three years ago I have been passionate about learning. My parenting style has always been very instinctive, based on love and listening to my son's needs. From a young age Ethan has loved messy play (and baby led weaning him at six months led to at least three of these messy play sessions a day!) and exploring the outside world. I did not have a huge amount of money to buy loads of toys for Ethan which I think has actually benefited him in a lot of ways. Ethan has always been included in what we are doing and, I believe, has benefited hugely from having a vast range of experiences (including climbing a mountain in the Schwarzwald aged twenty months, although he got a bit tired on the way down and we had to sing The Grand Old Duke of York to lift his spirits!).
I started childminding when Ethan was a year old and my instinctive approach now extends to the children I care for. The children love playing outside in all weathers, getting stuck into messy and arty play, creating their own worlds using the model farm as a base for them, using every day objects in imaginative play, singing and dancing, listening to a good story and socializing when I take them to play groups. I feel my job as a mother and childminder is to facilitate the children in having lots of enriching experiences. By being given these chances and our time children can grow in their understanding and feel emboldened to explore further. Often the simplest ideas offer the greatest opportunities for learning and I am constantly amazed by children's imagination and pure way of seeing the world. One of the many rewards of parenting and childminding is a chance to be like a child again and see how amazing the world is.