Early Years

Why Imagination and Creativity are Important

“A child’s imagination and creativity are enriched through their awareness of art and other children around them. All of these creative experiences build powerful connections within the brain. Creativity is associated with focus, independence, a willingness to explore and ingenuity.”

As children develop in imagination and creativity they are able to tell a story, relate to other people, keep themselves emotionally grounded and enter their imaginary worlds. (Gov.uk)

Fusion’s Early Years Stream

A working group has been created to share information about priorities and programming across the organisation. 

The first meeting took place in December, in which the group identified the following collaboration opportunities for 2023:

  • Providing materials and resources for early years settings.
  • Delivering a music plot in family centres.
  • Exploring whether ’50 things to do before you’re five’, could be initiated in Barnsley.

If you’d like to be involved in these quarterly meetings, please email [email protected]

Supporting Wellbeing

Download the Wellbeing, Creativity and Young People guide.

The guide was prepared by Jo Stockdale (founder of ‘Well Within Reach’) and commissioned by The Mighty Creatives.

Whilst it was created with educators in mind, it will be useful to any professional or practitioners with a remit to supporting the healthy, holistic development of children and young people, their social and emotional wellbeing, or unlocking the innate curiosity, creativity and imagination that is the potential in every young mind! 

Music Education Hub Sessions at Family Centres - March 2023

At the inaugural Fusion Early Years Stream Meeting in December 2022, partners discussed joint aspirations and collaboration opportunities to bring high-quality arts experiences to early years children within Barnsley. 

It was in this meeting that the ambition for music tutors to deliver sessions within Family Centres was born.

Fast forward three months and the Barnsley Music Education Hub had teamed up with Barnsley Council’s Family Centres to pilot these sessions.

By the end of March, 45-minute mini-concerts were delivered across six settings. The following feedback captures the impact and benefits of the collaboration for the children:

Our staff really enjoyed delivering the concerts. After songs and games to welcome them, we used ‘Carnival of the Animals’ – Saint Saen’s famous descriptive music about animals such as Elephants, Tortoise, Birds, Swan and Lions, to help the children start to understand the connection between sound and feelings. As well as playing snippets from the famous suite, children got to hear and feel live music and see and feel how the instruments made sounds.”  (Alex Francis, Barnsley Music Education Hub Lead Officer).

“The session was mainly two-year-olds, who are not yet able to concentrate for extended periods of time and whose language skills are still emerging. However, children did take an interest and stayed interested for the full music session.” – (Childcare Quality Improvement Officer, Barnsley Council).

“We loved the session at Kendray and Worsbrough Family Centre. The children are mainly two year olds and some of them struggled to sit for the duration but still joined in from a distance. It was lovely for them to experience real instruments being played and they really enjoyed recognising songs that they were familiar with.” – (Kendray and Worsbrough Family Centre).

“We know that involvement in music making and singing is crucial in supporting children’s creativity and imaginative play and can really shape their subsequent learning. This not only supports their physical and mental development through the development of gross motor, speech, language and communication skills but also develops their knowledge and awareness of other cultures, the wider world and the joy they can gain from creative self-expression. Opportunities to work in partnership with the Music Hub are key in ensuring our children opportunities to learn and grow within a full and rich offer.” – (Claire Gilmore, Barnsley Council Head of Early Start, Prevention and Sufficiency). 

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