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How much time is allocated to key persons for updating children’s learning journals?




 With spark you don’t get bogged down with observations, it is about moving children forward appropriately and working with parents to build the child’s brain to fulfil each child’s potential.

NO EXTRA time needs to be allocated for updating learning journals. 

They are all personal and professionally presented and will include parental input.

How much time is allocated to key persons for updating children’s learning journals?

Deb  My team have an afternoon each week about 2-3 hrs

  • Nicole Deb and ppa?
  • Deb Its all done at the same time as we are a private day nursery
  • Deb And they are digital so it’s just checking stuff

No need to check ‘stuff’ an observational perspective.  

It is easy to check for staff competencies and also to evaluate personal effectiveness.

  • Anna 15 mins per child ones a week
  • Anna Once
  • Claire Non x
  • Marie
  • Kerry……private day nursery

Summative Assessment – All data is available at the touch of a button in working time. 

There is never a need to take work home.

  • Alice An hour a week done at home claimed as overtime so can be more of summative assessment being done etc. Usually around 6 key children each.
  • Laura We used to be able to do this but since the new data protection and safeguarding our children’s identity we have to do at work.
  • Natalie 15 mins per key child each week
  • Deanne Our staff get 1 hour per week, room leaders get 3-4 per week. We are also private sector
    • Becky Kerry
  • Leigh None, team manage their own time in the room.
  • Laura 10 mins per child, I have 9.
  • Belinda None
  • Samantha 45 mins per week
  • Rebecca Sarah
  • Saffron As and when we can get it. If the children sleep staff can do it during sleep time
  • Catherine 15mins per child a week?
  • Emma None
  • Treeza 1 hour a week, staff permitting 12 key children each
  • Sasha Adelle
    • Adelle Sasha 1 hour every 2 week for 13 children
    • Sasha Adelle 2 hours every other week to do all planning and 13 kids LJ?
  • Lorraine 2hrs a week paid.
  • Lisa 30 mins a week xx
    • Ann Lisa some of these answers!!!!
    • Lisa I know think were missing out on loads Haha xx
  • Sarah Jen
  • Jessica  3 hours a week
  • Katie None I work three days a week 8 key children. We are told to do it in our own time ?unpaid of course

Working unpaid – does that not breach minimum wage legislation? 

If being ‘told’ then are you, volunteering?

  • Lorraine Sally Laura
  • George None in any of the jobs I’ve been in. Last job I had to do it all at home unpaid, no time back or in the room with the children. Current job I’m quieter so I get to do it when the children sleep.
  • Ann-Marie F
  • Mona None
  • Steph Whenever we can grab 5 mins ?
  • Faye When you can, if its quiet/sleep time, lunch breaks, at home…
  • Sally We get 2 hours a week of paperwork time
  • Jenny None we do it when the kids are playing, no cover
    • Jenny 12 key children
  • Gillian We allow 1.30 per key person they each have a afternoon
  • Nancy About 2.5 hours a week with around 6 key children each. We are still using paper books though and typing, printing and sticking in observations so takes FOREVER

Observations can be made without losing the learning flow and adult:child interaction. 

We call this observing ‘on the go’.   Planning can be done ‘on the go’ too.

  • Megan Amanda Leanne interesting to see what others do! So really 15 mins per week should suffice with focus child… we’ll chat about it when I see you both!
    • Amanda Megan it is interesting to see how long other setting get ?.
    • Nicola Danielle
    • Danielle Nicola how?
    • Nicola Danielle  ?????
  • Harriet I work in a baby room, so I do their stuff when they’re asleep. Get about an hour a day?!
  • Naomi 3 hours a week. We do paper journals
  • Sarah Laura  Charlotte  interesting what time people get
  • Alison My ladies come in 2 Saturdays each month to complete learning journeys. They get paid extra and work 8am – 2pm. They are all happy to do this and its part of their working contract. Works really well and no stressed staff
  • Sarah Maria if only ??
  • Kerry We get 3 hours a week
  • Midge I try and give my mine an afternoon per term (6hrs) just to cohort track and tie up loose ends etc…since PITM time out isn’t really needed weekly I have found

Observations can also be done in retrospect. 

Some settings that use spark, base their pedagogy ‘in the moment’ method.

  • Alley 20 mins a child
  • Amanda We each get 2 hours a week
  • Gitte we get 15 minutes /week /child.
  • Kathy ?? Mell
  • Allison ~ 2h/week for ~15 children (if there is staff cover)
  • Sarah Becky
  • Lisa We give 20 mins per child per week. We use Tapestry.

spark offers you a smarter way of working. 

spark doesn’t just emulate what is/used to be done on paper. 

We also agree with the Ofsted Inspection Framework (Sept 19). 

With a good system, staff will also know their children well and, therefore, be confident and competent to talk with the Ofsted inspector.

  • Amica Lauren
  • Salina My staff get 30 mins a week but no one has more than 6 children. Hopefully moving to planning In the moment helps us with this
  • Sandra We get 1h and 10 minutes a week to do 10 key children
  • Alis We have to do it in our own time in the evenings.
    • Alis Unpaid!!!
    • Sue Alis do you end up staying after work or come back later in the evening?
  • Dani 3 hours per child every half term
    • Liz Dani wow! That’s lots.
    • Dani Liz yes and we get paid for it to. Lucky!
  • Marian Linda Bethany Louise Alison
  • Kayleigh Laura
  • Amy Teresa  Interesting to see what other settings get! Xx
  • Jenny Susan
  • Sarah In a private nursery I was given no time away from the children, so was expected to do all planning, updating, etc in the room with the children. In a school I was given a whole morning (8:30 – 12:45, which included my lunch break) to do whatever I needed to

Plan ‘on the go’, ‘in the moment’ or ‘in advance’ …

No time out, away from the children is required.

  • Carla I’m in a private nursery we with Sarah
  • Lisa F
  • Mandy F
  • Rebecca Staff use tapestry as they go for photos.Each gets 2 and a half hours a week every week more at assessment tines November and June between 6 and 8 key children each
  • Lorraine 15 minutes per child every week . We are a term time preschool .
  • Kelly We don’t get any set time at all. The only time out the room we get is if it’s a quiet week when children don’t come in. I if I need it I try and get my stuff done on my late shift weeks as we only have a few children that stay until 6 xx
  • Helen 30 mins per week per key child. So if 6 key children then 3 hours a week
    • Vicky Helen wow! That’s fab
    • Hannah Vickyimagine ??
  • Steph Mine works out as 5 minutes per key child each week! ? (6 kids, 3 hours paid every half term)
  • Ingrid  Julie Elizabeth  Karisha  Lynette Marion
  • Vicky 2 and a half hours a week for 16 key children includes observations and adult leds. X
  • Farhana 2 hours per week for key workers with 8-12 key children after session and extra time is given to those key workers with children on any sen plans etc
  • Heidi 10 minutes per key child
  • Helen I give each staff member one office day per month to update profiles & planning. We are a private nursery
  • Beki  We use Tapestry. We don’t get any allocated time. We basically do it in front of Netflix on a nighttime or weekend. There are 3 of us and we have 78 kids all together (39 in the morn and 39 in the afternoon)

Why go digital if you still need to spend time away from the children?

EYFS maximum cost is .33p-£1 per month per REGISTERED PLACE in the UK

You are spending more on staffing to achieve what you are doing and good staff are hard to find!

We invest in the software so we evaluate and improve what we do, for you. 

REGISTERED PLACE = what it says on your Ofsted report.

  • Christina Beki same!!
  • Leigh Beki is that amount of children under 5 ? If so it’s against OFSTED stated ratios.
  • Emma Emily interesting this is what we where talking about on Friday
  • Kelly F
  • Paula Our staff get half a day each week.
    • Cindy Paula how Many key children do each staff have?
    • Paula Cindy  we have 10 each
  • Caroline 1/2 day per week. Up to 9 key children. SENDco gets extra 1/2 day for reviews etc.
  • Carly 15mins per key child per week (although it’s mostly when ratios/staff cover allow. We grab what we can, when we can as we’re grateful for any extra time).
  • Trudy F
  • Dawn Our setting has such a small team and we are so busy we end up doing everything at home.

Our mission is to ‘get it right’ for every child and every family.  

To do that, spark aims to ‘get it right’ for you – as a student, practitioner, room leader, manager, committee or the business owner.

360° degree system; promoting parent partnership (not a one size fits all approach), observations, planning, assessment, evaluation of ‘teaching’, useful easy to read data, promoting continuous improvement.

Happy to have a chat about your EYFS wish list:-

07 909 78 55 68/email catherine@sparkearlyyears.co.uk