information and resources for parents

Little girl's hand holding an adult hand. Representing AttachmentParent Update – March 2020

We wanted to send a message to parents at this time to let you know we are thinking of you and that we are here to help you through the next few months as many of you juggle working from home and homeschooling. 

Please use the tabs to the left to access heaps of homeschooling resources covering a variety of topics. We will continue to add to this list in the coming weeks.

Above all else, look after each other. 

FYI – Scam Email from The Department of Education
The DFE have been informed that some parents have received an email stating:

‘As schools will be closing, if you’re entitled to free school meals, please send your bank details and we’ll make sure you’re supported’.

This is a scam email – do not respond, and delete immediately.


Being a parent or carer is a special, rewarding and a wonderful experience. Many parents wouldn’t change it for the world.

In day to day life though, with the pressures of work and home, being a parent can be challenging and there are times when you may be unsure who to ask for advice and support.

Here at Services For Education we offer a wide range of guidance and resources that may just answer your questions.

For example questions about things like: emotional health and well-being, Assessment, Early Years (0-5), KS1 and KS2 SATs, Phonics and online safety.

If you regularly visit this page you will see a range of information, resources and support around topical themes.

Play Strategy Games
Have fun! Play battleships, lego, games of strategy, do puzzles together, build a fort, make a newspaper bridge across the living room and think about how to make it strong enough to hold toy cars etc.

Design Your Own Board Game
Design your own maths board game, colour it in, make it beautiful and then have loads of fun playing it. Get some inspiration here.

NRich maths has a wealth of activities and a dedicated primary interactive resource page with games and a whole host of maths fun.

I See Maths
Gareth Metcalfe will be offering a series of free daily home maths lessons from Mon 23.3.20 for primary school age children, offering challenges and games and stimulating children to think mathematically.

OxfordOwl is for children aged 3-11 and includes a selection of maths games, activity sheets and videos.

MathsBot – Manipulatives
Use the online counters, coins and xx etc. to help your child solve some addition, subtraction, multiplication and division problems you have set for them (or they have set for you!) and ask your child to PROVE their answer is right using the resources too. Play, make patterns and talk about them with the manipulatives.

MathsBot – Loop Cards
Generate a set of loop cards for addition or whatever you want to practice, (you can amend the difficulty in the top right hand corner). Print them off, cut them out and share them between you and your child(ren). Whoever has ‘start’ puts that card down. Whoever has the answer at the top of one of their cards, places it next to the first card and play continues until the loop is complete.
You can add competition by playing first person to play all of their cards is the winner or by having the cards face down and players take turns to turn one over and look for ‘start’, then the answer, then the next answer and so on…

White Rose Maths
White Rose Maths
have prepared a series of 5 maths lessons for each year group (Years 1-8) and will be adding 5 more each week. Every lesson has a video and activity.

Watch Countdown together and have a go at the numbers round. Generate your own numbers and play without the time limit but discuss your approaches and strategies – what did you notice first that enabled you to reach the answer.?

Paper Aeroplanes
Make paper aeroplanes and measure whose flies the furthest. Try to better your distance. Unfold the aeroplane and discuss what shapes you can see, colour them in in different categories ie isosceles triangles in one design, quadrilaterals another.

Star Jumps
How many star jumps can you do in 30 seconds? How many do you estimate you could do in 2 minutes then? Test it! Repeat for other activities; how many goals can you score in 1 minute? How long can you hold a handstand for?

Play Cards
Teach your child(ren) some of your favourite card games. If you know how to play Newmarket, you could use matchsticks or rolled up bits of paper if you don’t have a jar or bag of pennies to play with.

Skip Counting by 2 Song
The fun way to practice your two times tables, from NumberRock

Times Tables Rockstars
Times Tables Rockstars are offering affected schools free full access to their platform for multiplication and division – throughout any school closure.

Roald Dahl – Things to Do Indoors
Some great activities and resources to distract you, entertain you or just cheer you up.

Free Handwriting and Alphabet Practice Sheets
Fun and engaging activities that will help your child learn letter and word formation, build pencil control and establish a solid writing foundation. Download them here.

Love Reading For Kids
LoveReading4Kids is the biggest and best recommendation site for children’s books.

BookTrust – Getting Children Reading
BookTrust transforms lives by getting children and families reading. This blog is worth a read: Tips and Advice on Reading With Your Child

Free children’s books for you to download – including PDFs and audiobooks.

The Literacy Shed
The Literacy Shed is home to a wealth of visual resources that we have collected over 10 years as a primary school teacher.

Primary Music Resources

BBC Primary Music – KS1 / KS2
Primary Music takes a cross-curricular approach, with music objectives explored in relation to popular infant topics or related areas of the curriculum.

BBC Physical Education / Music KS1: Dance with the Elements
Dances for each of the four element have been choreographed to different pieces of classical music including JS Bach, Karl Jenkins, Aaron Copland, Johann Strauss, Claude Debussy and John Adams.

BBC Bring the Noise – KS1/KS2
5 musical ideas to try with children at home. If you’re self isolating or caring for children at home with schools closed these simple ideas will help keep little ones occupied while encouraging them to explore and learn about music.

Royal Opera House : Hansel and Gretel Immersive KS1/KS2
Join CITV presenter Luke Franks as he visits the Royal Opera House and meets a host of young singers who introduce him to the opera Hansel and Gretel.

BBC Bitesize – Music KS2
Keep Learning From Home, this April.Stay on track with Bitesize.

Twinkl – KS1 Music
Learn about different instruments, musical genres and basic composition with our Primary Music Resources for Key Stage 1 students.

Secondary Music Resources

BBC Music KS3 / GCSE: Music technology
A series of clips aimed at informing and enabling music students to understand the techniques and technology involved in music making.

SEND Music Resources

BBC Bring the Noise – SEND music teaching guides and tutorials
A series of short films demonstrating different techniques for teaching music activities to SEND pupils.

BBC Bring the Noise – Five songs in British Sign Language (BSL)
BBC Bring the Noise have produced five films with songs in British Sign Language (BSL). Learn to sign and dance-a-long to the songs.

Bloom (App)
Bloom creates a relaxing ambience that is visually pleasing. Makes drone like sounds by tapping on a colourful screen. It can motivate students to sing or hum over the top and sounds particularly cool with metal percussion (this could be improvised using household items !)

Loopseque/Loopseque kids (App)
Create a beat by touching light up squares on a screen. Loopseque can be used to teach rhythm and pulse by getting students to move/tap or play in time. Can also motivate them to improvise over the top and can encourage students to sing if they have a funky beat to back them.

Thumb Jam and Garage Band (Apps)
Both give access to a variety of high quality instrumental sounds .Can play expressively using dynamics(loud and soft) . Both apps have the ability to record and layer up tracks which encourages creativity and allows students to listen back and reflect.

Skratch (App)
Skratch is a simple pad instrument that you can record 4 different sounds into. Could be instrumental,vocal or everyday sounds. Press the coloured pads to make some music. Could also make up games of trying to copy the sequence or press the correct colour.

Bla Bla Bla (App)
Faces move when a sound is made. Bla Bla Bla can help motivate students to make a sound or they could interact by trying to imitate the faces.

Toca Band (App)
Create your own band using cute colourful characters, with Toca Band. Can just enjoy jamming and experimenting with different characters or use it as a backing track for other activities such as dancing , feeling the beat or doing actions.

Musical Autoharp (App)
A nice sounding instrument that is easy to play by swiping a finger up and down the screen. Musical Autoharp could be used to improvise or do musical activities such as going up and down, playing and stopping or fast and slow.

Bebot (App)
Bebot is a robot synth that moves and makes faces while you play. A lot of fun and could be used in a similar way to the autoharp. Also able to change the settings so it plays in a different key or makes a slightly different sound.

Korg iKaossilator (App)
 A sophisticated synth app in which you can have a lot of fun making music and recording loops. Has rhythms already loaded onto it and is visually pleasing . A great tool to sing, rap or play over the top of or just have a good old boogie !

General Resources and Activities

Classics For Kids
Find out about composers, play games and download activity sheets via this fun website “Classics for Kids.
Free online music theory lessons.

Berliner Philharmonie – Digital Concert Hall
The venue may be closed but Berliner Philharmonie is bringing the music to you at home with free access to all concerts and films.

Carnegie Hall
Carnegie Hall presents The Young Person’s Guide to the Orchestra

Charanga Rap Competition
Aspiring rapper? Check this out: Writing a rap: free VIP resources and competitions.

London Symphony Orchestra – Resources For Teachers
Use these digital resources created for teachers to help plan and deliver creative, fun and educational music activities at home.

Keezy is a musical instrument (app) for toddlers, professional musicians, and everyone in between! Looks like great fun.

Learning Synths
On this website, you’ll learn the basics of using synthesizers (or synths). No prior experience or equipment is required; you’ll do everything right here in your browser.

Chrome Music Lab
Chrome Music Lab is a website that makes learning music more accessible through fun, hands-on experiments.

Musical Contexts
Tried and tested music resources for teachers which can be adapted for home learning.

Mini Moog
The Minimoog Model D App is a mobile transmutation of the world’s first portable synthesizer, the Minimoog Model D®. Check it here.

SFE Music School

At Services For Education, we firmly believe that music has the power to encourage, transform and inspire, like no other art form can. Research shows that these changes can come in the form of improving well-being, instilling confidence, increased intellectual development, creating friendships, to name but a few. Find out more here.

NATRE (National Association of Teachers of Religious Education)
RE Today is supporting NATRE by providing all teachers (and parents) with free resources which they can use to support with home learning.

P.E With Joe
Joe Wicks The Body Coach hosts a live 30 minute kids workout daily at 9am on YouTube. 

Keep a Gratitude Journal
Encourage children to keep a gratitude journal. Each day, spend six minutes writing about the following: three things you are grateful for, how you plan to make today great, a good deed you will do that day, how you plan to improve yourself and, at the end of it, some great things you experienced that day.

Tallulah the Owlet | A Cosmic Kids Yoga Adventure!
A fun yoga story for kids aged 3+ – about learning the meaning of wisdom.

Be the Pond | Cosmic Kids Zen Den – Mindfulness for kids
A short mindfulness video for kids.

Spend Time Outside
Buy a skipping rope and do 100 skips every day, play hopscotch or build an obstacle course in the garden and time yourselves completing it. 

Compassion Matters
Compassion Matters provides a basis for children to explore ethical ideas about compassion and its related concepts.

Services For Education Paid Emotional Health Resources

Something Has Happened – Meet Joe. Something has happened that has upset Joe and he’s not sure what to do. Follow his story and, using the resource pack, explore the ways that Joe can find the help that he needs. This introduces children to recognising what their feelings are telling them, networks of trusted adults, and the skills of persistence and the importance of breaking the rules in an emergency.

Ruby Rafa and Riz. Feel Think and Do – Ruby, Rafa and Riz have lots of things in common and lots of differences. They also each experience something that affects how they feel, what they think and finally what they do. This resource is unique in its approach to showing children how their feelings and thoughts affect the way they behave.

Myg and Me – We all feel anxious at times, and that is OK. This resource will help your child to understand a little bit about their brain and why we all feel anxious at times. The resource will then help you to introduce your child to a wide range of activities and strategies to help them to manage their anxious feelings and to calm themselves when needed.

Try This Teaching – Offline Learning
Offline learning resource: non-screen activities you can do at home. 

Cook Dinner Together
Get children to help cook the dinner – teach them how to safely chop an onion and make a spaghetti bolognese or other basic, everyday dinner dishes. There are plenty of websites with child friendly recipes including The Great Grub Club.

Teach your child to make an omelette or be creative with scrambled eggs to individualise theirs for flavour. Add chives from the garden, ketchup, cheese or think of other salt free ways to add flavour.

Scouts – The Great Indoors
The Scouts have pulled together some inspired indoor activity ideas. Keep your kids learning new skills and having fun (and avoid hearing ‘I’m bored’ every 30 seconds) all in #TheGreatIndoors.

With more “free” time, it’s a great opportunity to get on top of your gardening, especially now you have some full time little helpers too. Check out these YouTube videos for inspiration.

Tree Tools For Schools
The Woodland Trust provide lots of ideas, activities and worksheets for identifying and working with nature, wood, fungi and wildlife to help you get outside into the garden or a nearby forest or park if possible.

Herb Garden
Pick overgrown herbs from your garden and dry them. Make labels for jars and plan recipes you could cook with them.

The Lego Challenge
If you live with LEGO fans, issue them a 30-Day LEGO Challenge and let their imaginations run wild! Download the resource here.

The Education Hub – sharing resources for all children at home
Due to the current situation with coronavirus (covid-19), home educators are now sharing their resources for all children at home.

Department of Education – My Activity Passport
An editable activity checklist for children under 11, giving young people the opportunity to try new things and develop new skills can be hugely beneficial. Click here for supporting resources.

Hungry Little Minds
Simple, fun activities for kids, from newborn to five.

Time Magazine
The Secret to Keeping Your Kids Happy, Busy and Learning if Their School Closes Due to Coronavirus – read the article here

You could even get the children to help you out with the household chores…


Safeguarding is the process of protecting children (and vulnerable adults), and providing safe and effective care.

Safeguarding is everybody’s responsibility and schools have a legal duty to ensure that all of their staff receive regular training in Safeguarding.

Most schools deliver this training at the start of every school year.

Recently more and more organisations that work with children, such as sports clubs, scouts, youth clubs, have tightened their Safeguarding procedures, including ensuring that staff:

  • Are safe to work with children
  • Understand their duties with regard to Safeguarding
  • Know what action they need to take if they believe a child is being harmed or at risk of being harmed (Child Protection)

Safeguarding is a fundamental part of being a parent or carer. This page will look at information, advice and resources that can help you to be more informed.

Safeguarding Resources

Interactive Anti-Bullying Information Tool for Parents and Carers
What is bullying? Check out this interactive informational tool for parents, created by Anti-Bullying Alliance.

Services For Education – Online Safeguarding Course
Do you work with children on a paid or voluntary basis? Perhaps you run a club or help out with extra-curricular activities? Services For Education is a trusted provider of safeguarding training in the UK, offering online, face-to-face and bespoke options for organisations and individuals. We have created an online safeguarding course for anyone who works with children, enabling them to stay up to date and show that they are fulfilling their duty of care.

Safeguarding Questions For Parents and Carers Draft Guidance – December 2018
This draft guidance from the Department for Education, is non-statutory. It is intended to be a voluntary resource to help parents and carers who choose to have their children attend out-of-school settings (OOSS) understand what a safe environment looks like.

Internet Safety Videos From NSPCC and BBC

Jessie & Friends: Online Safety Education for 4-7s

This fantastic set of animations from the CEOP Education team is aimed at children between four and seven years old and will help protect them from sexual abuse and other risks associated with being online.

Parenting Group – UCB
An informal drop-in group for parents with concerns about their child or teenager and any of these issues.

our latest posts for parents

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Important: cancellation of 2019/20 national curriculum assessments

We regret that, following the announcement by The Secretary of State for Education (on Wednesday 18 March), the 2019/20 national curriculum assessments will not now take place due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. As a result, all early years foundation stage, key stage 1 (KS1) and key stage 2 (KS2) assessments, have been cancelled.

Early Years Foundation Stage Reforms
The aim of this consultation is to seek views from interested parties on proposed changes to the statutory framework for the early years foundation stage.

National Curriculum Assessments Calendar
Important dates for primary schools to plan for the 2020 key stages 1 and 2 tests (commonly called SATs), teacher assessment and the phonics screening check.

Ofsted Parent View
Give your views about your child’s school with Ofsted’s new online survey including how happy they are and how safe they feel.

Reception Baseline Assessment Video for Parents – Department of Education

Key stage 1 and 2 National Curriculum Tests: Information for Parents
Information leaflet and videos for parents about end of key stage assessments (often referred to as SATs) for 7 and 11 year olds.

Video One: New pre-key stage standards in primary schools
As recommended by the Rochford Review of assessment arrangements for pupils working below the standard of the national curriculum, from the academic year 2018/19 primary school teachers will use new pre-key stage standards for key stage 1 and key stage 2. In this video, Diane Rochford and Janet Thompson tell us more about the pre-key stage standards.

Video Two: National curriculum tests (SATs) at key stage 1
Information for parents of pupils in year 2, typically aged 7, about assessments in May.

Video Three: National curriculum tests (SATs) at key stage 2
Information for parents of pupils in year 6, typically aged 11, about assessments in May.

Leaflets: Key stage 1 and 2 National Curriculum Tests
Information leaflets for parents about end of key stage assessments (often referred to as SATs) for 7 and 11 year olds.

Every Summer term, we offer a series of courses to support those whom educate their children at home in Birmingham. We have a series of two hour courses covering English, Maths, Science and Emotional Health at Primary and Secondary.

The courses are free to attend and are designed to give you support and practical strategies, and signpost you to free and easily available resources to help you give your children the best possible home educational experience.

For more information please contact us at

An artistic picture of a girl playing the violin, looking out onto the conductor. Symbolises the services for education concerts

Following the latest government update (March 16, 2020), Services For Education is postponing all Area and Central Ensemble rehearsals and concerts and events until Sunday 19th April with immediate effect. Please help to circulate this important message. Any updates will be posted on our website, social media and Facebook page each Friday at 12, noon.

Please feel free to contact us should you require further details on Ensemble postpone on:

At Services For Education, we believe that the ensemble experience is absolutely crucial to any high-quality musical education.

That’s why, every year we bring together over 2,000 young musicians from across Birmingham, to form over 70 ensembles, which are free to join, and are specifically designed to cater for all genres and abilities.

We run two types of Ensembles in Birmingham; Central Ensembles which require an audition and Area Ensembles which do not.

Find out more here.

If you regularly visit this page you will see a range of information, resources and support around topical themes. Leave your email below if you’d like to be kept up to date.

all of our resources and courses for parents:


Curriculum Area Training

Boys and Girls – Book


Curriculum Area Training

Clued Up For Growing Up


Mental Health and Wellbeing

Something Has Happened Online Teaching Pack


Curriculum Area Training

Your Mummy Ate My Football – Book


Mental Health and Wellbeing

Ruby Rafa and Riz: Feel Think and Do


Curriculum Area Training

Bits and Bobs, Sweat and Spots – Book


Curriculum Area Training

Boys and Girls, Men and Women – Book


Mental Health and Wellbeing

Myg and Me – Book


Mental Health and Wellbeing

Myg and Me Teaching Pack


Mental Health and Wellbeing

Something Has Happened


Mental Health and Wellbeing

Supporting Your Child’s Emotional Health