How we developed Birth to 5 Matters

Our aim was for Birth to 5 Matters to be “guidance by the sector, for the sector”.

Throughout the process of developing the guidance there have been opportunities for practitioners to be involved in drafting and commenting:

Each working group was asked to provide a bibliography to indicate the key research which underpinned their work. You can find these linked from each section of the guidance, in addition to suggestions for further reading and resources to support practice.

Additional input

To supplement the responses from the online surveys, we also held a number of focus group meetings with practitioners to ensure we gained the perspectives of those who were less experienced or less highly qualified than our survey respondents. As the project developed, we also consulted with reference groups through Early Years Coalition member organisations.

The parent and child voice

While Birth to 5 Matters is provided for practitioners and parents are not the intended audience, we did nevertheless seek the views on the document draft of a small number of parents, through Coalition members. Within the short time scale of the project it was not possible to consult with children in an ethical and thorough way, but we gathered children’s voices through a small survey of what is important in early years settings to parents and children, and conducted a literature review of existing research offering children’s voices. You can read a summary of that work plus the resulting bibliography. In addition, children’s perspectives were represented through the knowledge and care of the many contributors who are attentive to, and respectful of, the children with whom they work.