Acorn’s early years courses and workshops for parents are written and delivered by our team of knowledgeable in-house trainers, Laura, and Becky. The courses are designed to support parents and carers to build healthy relationships with their children by understanding child development, how best to connect with their children when distressed, how children thrive through loving interactions, and instilling fun and excitement in play. We also work in partnership with external professionals who are experts to deliver courses in their field, such as First Aid and Safeguarding, equipping parents with the knowledge they need to help keep children safe.

Our practitioners work in partnership with parents and carers to ensure training courses are tailored to what they would like to learn more about. They do this through daily conversations with parents and carers and by providing opportunities to seek parents’ views either through our parent surveys, or ‘Question of the month’. The Question of the month is displayed in the foyer of the nursery with a bowl of gems ready to place in a ‘Yes’ or ’No’ jar in response to the question asked.

The gems are counted at the end of the month and based on the response, decisions for training or further information are provided to parents and carers.

(Question of the Month at our Stony Stratford nursery)

Our interactive courses and workshops provide opportunities for discussion to help parents share their own experiences and tips with others and practical activities to make resources to take home and use with their children. In our recent workshop, ‘Promoting Positive Behaviour’, we shared different strategies parents can use to help children calm strong emotions and reach a safe state of calm. During this workshop, parents made sensory bottles using water, oil, and resources to fill a clear bottle, with the aim to use it as a relaxing tool to focus on when experiencing overwhelming emotions.


This is what some of our parents said about the promoting positive behaviour workshop:

“I loved it! Very good advice on proactive strategies and their implementation to promote positive behaviour in children. We applied some changes straight after coming back from the workshop and we have already seen the difference in the children’s responses at bedtime and when leaving the house this morning. Thank you so much!”

"The parent training session was very helpful. It was a good opportunity to meet other parents and share the challenges that we all face. Becky's expertise and guidance on how to manage difficult behaviour and encourage positive behaviour was particularly helpful. I came away with a list of useful tips and advice that I think will help us to give more support to our child."

"I found it to be a great opportunity to take time out to reflect on parenting experiences of others whilst gaining knowledge, support and skills from those qualified."

"It was really good and interactive. Learned tons and it was good to hear other parent experiences. Would definitely recommend."

Here are some comments following the Parents First Aid course:

“It was overall a very pleasantly run course - the trainer delivered the content in a very informative and yet conversational manner and allowed a great level of participation from all of us”.

“Really liked the practical aspect of the training re: DR ABC”

We are currently devising more training courses for later in the year, including recognising and supporting powerful play experiences, developing communication and language in the home and community, and shaping quality interactions to strengthen and nurture relationships and to help instil emotional security.

For more information about the courses we provide, please click here or contact [email protected].