Nurture, Learn, Grow

What is in the moment planning?

“Let the children choose what to do, join them and support them in their pursuits. Then write up what has happened.”

Anna Ephgrave the author of the most influential books on in the moment planning attending our setting in August 2019 to deliver the training to the staff on how we could incorporate in the moment planning within our setting. We talked about the cohort of children we have and the area in which our setting is located in and how we could scaffold and support the children's learning and development. 

In the moment planning works by instead of taking the familiar long-term cycle of observation, reflection and planning, you do all of this instantly. That means working more closely with the children to observe an interest and extend it in the moment.

The basis for all of this is that children have a natural desire to learn and explore. So instead of holding their hand through a variety of pre-set activities, you can allow them to find their own interests, and use this to enhance and build upon their existing knowledge.

It’s often broken down into three stages:

  • The Child’s Spark – This is when the child first shows an interest in something. There should be an air of fascination around the object and concentration in what they are now doing.
  • The Teachable Moment – The teacher will notice this and approach the child. This is the opportunity to extend their interest, by asking open-ended questions and considering ways to apply this interest to other options within the environment.
  • The Documentation – At a later date, you can document the observation. Include the spark, the teachable moment and what you did next. This will help you to map out each child’s interests, and plan an environment that works for them.

Within our setting we combine in the moment planning with some adult led activities such as interventions for example children who need support with their confidence in talking to others the staff will complete their BLAST (BOOSTING LANGUAGE AUDITORY SOCIAL TALKING) programme or if a child needing support with managing their own emotions the staff would complete 'ICAN' training. 


We find the balance between this works very well and instead of focussing on 'one next step' for a child you can teach them so much more and the child takes their own lead in their learning. 



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Carmelite Way off Exeter St, Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP1 2SG