01904 554277 york.learning@york.gov.uk
The most important teacher in your child’s life is you!

“Evidence shows that the quality of the home learning environment is a key predictor of a child’s future – what parents do is just as important as who they are.”

Improving the home learning environment, National Literacy Trust, Nov 2018

Do you want to give your child the best start? Are phonics and maths a mystery to you? Are you unsure of modern methods and puzzling over homework being brought home? Maybe you want to volunteer or work in a school or pre-school setting but don’t know where to start.

Family Learning is for you if you are:

  • a parent, grandparent or carer who wants to support a child’s learning
  • someone who is volunteering or working in school or pre-school settings or is thinking about this line of work
  • wanting to brush up and develop your own skills and maybe think about your own future too.

The Background

The Family Learning team has been working in York for nearly 25 years.  We deliver workshops and courses across the city, in key areas, schools and community venues – and now online too – providing provide support for parents, grandparents and carers to build strong home learning environments for their children.  We work with schools and pre-school teams to identify local needs and develop courses that support children’s learning and development. At the same time, we work with our learners to recognise and develop their own skills, gaining confidence and in many cases qualifications for themselves.  You can contact us yourself about your own learning and we also welcome referrals and partnership proposals from school, pre-school settings, local area teams and other teams and community organisations.

We are currently looking for Community Learning Champions to help us spread the word.  Could that be you?

To find out more or book a place on a family learning course, contact us:

01904 554277

If you work with families or individuals who need support with English and Maths or just want ideas for spending quality time with their children, click here to find out more about how we could work together.

Family Learning – for people like you!

“Home schooling” is top of the agenda right now but really the home learning environment has always been important.  Even in “normal times”, children spend less than 20% of their waking hours at school, so everything you can do as a parent, carer or grandparent to support their learning and development in their early years and throughout school, will give them a real advantage.

Don’t worry if you think you don’t know enough about how children are taught.  As parents, carers and grandparents, you are experts in your own right and we have a whole range of resources, workshops and courses available to explore how children learn at home and at school.  If you missed out on qualifications in English and maths while you were at school yourself, you can do that with us too.  Some courses offer both!

During lockdown, we are uploading all sorts of ideas and resources onto our Family Learning in York Facebook page to help keep children active and amused with little snippets of fun learning activities. On Wednesdays one of our maths team, Dave, is on hand to share his expertise and answer your questions and on Fridays we have stress-busting tips simply to help you chill out.

A recent parent survey threw up “Managing stress for me and my family” as a main are of concern (for over 80% of you!) and so we now have short courses which flag up all sorts of activities you can do to focus and relax more successfully.

If you have children starting school in September or January, our “Get ready for school” course is just what you need to be able to share ideas, voice concerns and prepare both yourself and your child for the big day.

The Great Big Family Learning Survey

We’re still planning for the future, and you can really help us here.  We have a survey on the go which will inform our planning for our Facebook page and face to face and online workshops and courses in the autumn term and beyond.  Please, if you can, take the time to complete this survey. It will probably take about 10 minutes and the information we collect will be invaluable to both ourselves and the schools and settings we work with. (No personal information is shared.)

Click here to complete the survey.

One of the things Family Learning does best is take you on a journey.  Many of our learners come along to find out how children are taught at school, for instance in maths, and then go on to gain an adult maths qualification for themselves. In the classes, whether face to face or online, you’ll be guided by an experienced adult tutor to share ideas with other learners and learn at a relaxed pace. You’ll make resources and talk about activities to try out at home and you’ll build confidence to help guide your child and speak to their school or setting about their progress. Many of our learners have gone on to volunteer and work in schools and early years settings, along with a host of other jobs. We’re with you all the way!

Family Learning … because learning together is fun – and right now, because learning together couldn’t be more important!

Stay safe and well.

Our local offer is based on the EAST model:

Easy Courses are adapted to work with learners at a level they feel comfortable with, setting group and individual SMART targets, working collaboratively to achieve their aims. Progression pathways are planned so that learners are able to build on what they have learned and move on to higher level courses, including some with access to nationally recognised qualifications.
Accessible Our courses will all be delivered online in the autumn term. Learners will be supported if necessary to access these.
When it is possible, we will also run courses in early years settings, in schools, libraries and community venues, close to where people live, often with free childcare available, at times to fit in with school and nursery drop off and pick up times.
Sociable One of the best things about Family Learning is the connection between tutor and learners. We encourage our adult learners to share their learning experiences and tips, fully acknowledging the fact that parents are experts in their own right. Friendships made through Family Learning classes often remain long after the courses have finished.
Timely Our support is there when people need it at times in their lives when it matters to them, when they have young children or at key transition stages, for instance when a child starts primary school or when the adult is looking for employment or a change in career direction.

It was a lot of things really… just to get me out and to get qualifictions because I don’t have anything like that. Also, when my little girls go to the crèche it gives them more confidence. I always try and do homework with them and it’s kind of helped me to help them. I think it goes back to the confidence thing, talking to people, doing stuff… I’m doing Children’s Centre Advisory Board as well. I would never have thought I would do something like that years ago.
I'll be able to get myself a job
[Since doing my Family Learning course] I’ve been doing a Level 2 Business Admin course through York Learning. I’ve already passed two assignments for that, and I’m hoping to pass it by September so when my child goes to school full time I’ll be able to get myself a job.
"We did this at my mam's"
My youngest is chuffed and keeps telling me how proud he is. He’s coming on well now at school because I can help him at home with his reading and his English, and then he can go back to school and say “We did this at my mam’s”.
I got a job!
It’s given me a confidence boost. I ended up getting a job at Primark so obviously I’ll be working on the tills and that involves maths and (I’ll use my English) interacting with customers.
Going back to my roots
I’m doing a Level 2 WEA Helping in Schools course and then I’ll do Level 3 so I can be a TA and working a crèche and children’s centres or schools. I’m going to start college in September. I definitely wouldn’t have done any of this without going back to my roots and doing the Family Learning.
I did Keeping up with the children in maths and English with Family Learning and passed my Functional Skills qualifications at the same time as learning how children are taught in school and this has really helped me get a job as a Teaching Assistant, which I really enjoy.