Workshop Programme

Get hands on and join in with interactive workshops to get some innovative ideas to take back to your setting. These low or no cost activities will bring together education and play and are free for visitors to attend.  

See the workshops from last year’s event below – the workshops for Childcare Expo Midlands 2019 will be confirmed soon, so keep checking this page for more updates!

Friday 28th September

Liz Clark at childcare expo

10.30am – 11:30am: Sponge Play: everyday creative adventures

Liz Clark, Artistic Director and Trainer, Turned On Its Head / Our Creative Adventure

An accessible, immersive, creative play workshop led by Liz Clark, Artistic Director from Turned On Its Head ( and creator of Our Creative Adventure – a training and mentoring programme for Early Years Practitioners.  A passionate advocate of ‘everyday creativity’ Liz brings heaps of colourful, squishy, sensory household sponges, loads of great music and an adventure of discovery and creativity you can’t help but get involved in. This workshop unpacks creative sensory play, interaction for 0-4’s and their importance in building the best spongey brains in our young children. Attendees will gain knowledge about how dance improvisation can enhance the relationship between adult and child and leave refreshed, excited and motivated to play and explore.

Healther McAvan

12:30pm – 1:30pm: Who wants to make a unicorn?

Heather McAvan, Founder, Mrs Mactivity

Attendees will have the opportunity to use Mrs Mactivity resources to make their own unicorn crafts in a way that can be translated to their own settings. We will also be giving ideas on how you can extend the concept of a unicorn into the area of personal, social and emotional development, demonstrating how to encourage children to think about what is unique and special about themselves and others.


2:30pm – 3:30pm: Dance and Movement Pedagogy

Helen Battelley, Movement Consultant, Music + Movement

EYFS Dance and Movement Pedagogy focuses on how to implement movement into the EYFS framework.  With high obesity levels in children it is important to understand the impact this methodology has, not only on physical health but social and emotional wellbeing. This workshop will provide inspiration to encourage movement, ideas to stimulate learning and learners and an interactive experience for delegates.

Saturday 29th September

Sue Asquith (website)

10:30am – 11:30am: Open up to play with loose parts

Sue Asquith, National Day Nurseries Association (NDNA) Consultant

Open yourself up to the endless opportunities of play with loose and found parts. During this interactive workshop we will look at where to source the materials, how to use them indoors and outside and the different areas of the curriculum we can cover using these materials. We will focus on how loose parts can enhance your provision and provide opportunities for open-ended play and what this means for the children’s learning outcomes.


12:30pm – 1:30pm – Mindfulness in the Early Years

Jude Brown, Director, Nurture in Mind Ltd

An introduction to simple, fun and practical mindfulness activities for young children, parents and childcare professionals. This will include simple body awareness activities, breathing techniques and engaging children in using mindfulness informally each day.

Nicky at Childcare Expo

2:30pm – 3:30pm: Create, Perform, Teach!

Nikky Smedley, Creative Education Consultant, Professional Storyteller and Author, Jessica Kingsley Publishers

The workshop will cover the use of creative and performance skills in an early years setting, through case studies, practical suggestions, theory, reflection and fun! Content covered will include storytelling, puppetry, non-verbal communication, physicality, use of photography and more, with a view to giving the audience an increased sense of confidence in these fields, with easy to apply tips and activities that they can take away and use.