Following the huge success of their national early years conference in March, the Herts for Learning Early Years team have invited some of the thought-provoking and inspirational speakers to return to lead a discussion on the status of play in the early years.

A convergence of minds about the status of play

  • Is play being eroded from early childhood education?
  • Is our education system driven by outcomes and taking away the playfulness of learning?
  • How can we ensure that play maintains its value in curriculum implementation in the EYFS?

Speakers will include:

  • Tamsin Grimmer, Early Years Consultant
  • Greg Bottrill, Author and childhood advocate
  • Ben Kingston-Hughes, Managing Director, Inspired Children
  • Shaddai Tembo, Lecturer, Doctoral student, writer for Critical Early Years.


Delegates will be able to gain a greater understanding of the key issues around the debate on the importance of learning through play in the EYFS, including practical suggestions and strategies for ensuring every practitioner finds a balance that works for their cohort of children.


“Play is critical because it helps children learn about themselves, the world and each other. It is naïve to think that we will aid children’s development with a focus on a structured approach to teaching alone, so how can you ensure there is a shared understanding about the importance of play as an integral approach to learning?“ Mireille MacRaild, Education Services Director – Early Years, Herts for Learning.


EYFS practitioners, teachers, leaders, and managers wishing to become advocates for play, are invited to join this lively and engaging online session and be part of the convergence of minds.

The Herts for Learning Early Years National Debate

A convergence of minds about the status of play

Friday 10th June 2022 online 1:00pm – 3:00pm.


All sessions will be recorded to allow delegates who are booked on to an event, to watch them for 28 days after the event, if they are unable to participate in some or all of the live event on the day.

Cost: £49 (excl. VAT)

For full details and how to book, please visit, hertsforlearning.co.uk/events/herts-learning-early-years-national-debate