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Sleep deprivation

Sleep deprivation is a condition that occurs if you don’t get enough sleep and we understand this can be one of the hardest parts of being a parent.

If you need further advice or support please contact our health visitor single point of contact on 01522 843000 to speak with a member of the team.

Cry-sis helpline is also available 7 days a week 9am-10pm 08451 228 669

For the link ‘When your baby won’t sleep: Public Health England’ please click here to take you to this YouTube video. 

Safer sleep

The Lullaby Trust provide information on cots, sleeping position, co-sleeping, bedding and more for safer sleep for your baby. Their advice provides simple steps for how you can sleep your baby and give you peace of mind during this time. Their advice is based on strong scientific evidence and should be followed for all sleep periods, not just at night.

If you have any questions about safer sleep, please call our information line on 0808 802 6869 (lines open Monday-Friday 10am-5pm).

Their website provides free presentations on how to sleep your baby safely as well. Please click here for the link to their website for more information.

It also provides information on:

  • Coronavirus and caring for your baby

  • Baby summer safety

  • The safest room temperature for babies

  • The best sleeping position for your baby

  • Sharing a room with your baby

  • Smoking during pregnancy and around your baby

  • The best mattresses and bedding for your baby

  • Breastfeeding and SIDS

  • Co-sleeping with your baby

  • Swaddling your baby and using slings

  • A clear cot is a safer cot

  • Reducing the risk of SIDS for premature babies

  • Dummies

  • Safer sleep for twins

  • Baby sleeping in Moses basket

  • Sleeping products

  • Baby Check app

  • Car seats and SIDS

  • Coping with sleep deprivation as a new parent

  • Vaccinations and SIDS

  • Immunisations and SIDS

  • Safer sleep publications


Babies and Dummies

We understand that some young babies have a dummy to help them settle. The NHS encourage you to try to stop using a dummy by the time your baby is 10-12 months.

To prevent problems later:

  • Give your child as much time without the dummy as possible.

  • As your baby gets older, try to use the dummy for sleep times only.

  • Don’t put anything on the dummy to encourage sucking.


  • Babies who use dummies have fewer chances to babble.

  • Extended use of a dummy may contribute to dental and speech sound problems.

  • It’s easier to wean a baby off a dummy than a toddler!

If your baby has a dummy:

Try to use it as little as possible.

Always take the dummy out when your baby is babbling or chatting.

How do you get rid of a dummy?

If your child is using their dummy all the time, or is not giving their dummy up as soon as you would like, try these ideas:

  • Wean them off – gradually decrease the times when you let your child use their dummy.

  • Restrict dummy use to key times during the day, such as bedtime or when your child is ill. Be firm.

  • Point out older girls and boys, who don’t use dummies, to your child.  Pre-schoolers love being more grown-up!

  • Encourage your child to give all their dummies away to a person who is important to them, such as a grandparent or pre-school key worker.

  • Reward your child with fun activities, stickers or star charts – don’t give them sweets instead of their dummy.

  • Remember your child will grow out of their reliance on their dummy.


For further guidance and advice please click here


Introducing your baby to solid foods, also referred to as weaning or complementary feeding, starts when your baby is around 6 months old. Your baby should be introduced to a varied diet, alongside their usual breast milk or first infant formula.

It can be confusing knowing when and how to start introducing solid foods. The NHS have set out a guide to help you through the weaning journey and explain what it all means. They provide expert NHS advice, helpful videos, tips from other parents, and lots of simple, healthy weaning recipe and meal ideas.

Please click here to be linked to their website.


Bilingual babies

Evidence suggests that it's better to speak to your children in all of the languages that you speak at home as they're more likely to pick these up early on. Bilingualism shouldn't be a barrier to learning language - it should be an asset. To find out more information about developing language in a bilingual household please click here

Relationships Matter

Our relationships affect every aspect of our lives. If you need support to learn how to make yours work better and have the opportunity to share questions and stories with the community; then please click here to be directed to the website.  There are fun and helpful activities or you can get private support from a Click listener.

Information for dads

Dads Matter

Dads Matter UK is here to provide support for dads worried about or suffering from Depression, Anxiety and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Everyone has feelings of anxiety at some point in their life. For example, you may feel worried and anxious about being a dad and if you will be good enough. This is just like what mothers experience. During times like these, feeling anxious can be perfectly normal. Please click here for more information

They also offer sessions with the ‘Amazing Dads Matter’

‘The DadPad’

The DadPad was created because babies don’t come with a set of instructions, and dads told us they wanted important information on what to expect and how to care for their baby. We listened to what dads, their partners and professionals asked for and combined it all in this new DadPad for dads-to-be. Please click here to follow the link for further information and how to download the app. 

Screen time- Guidance from MyVision 


Screens are everywhere in the modern world. But spending too much time looking at screens can be harmful to your children’s eyes, bodies and minds. Therefore, setting limits regarding screen time can help protect your child’s health and help them live a balance happy life.

Teaching your child how to interact appropriately with digital media will also help them stay safe while living a modern life. Problems screens can cause are displayed below:


  • Reduced socialization

  • Poor self-esteem

  • Lack of physical activity

  • Weight management problems

  • Mood problems

  • Increased risk in high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and other chronic health problems

  • Shortened attention span

  • Fatigue

  • Blurred vision

  • Headaches

  • Dry eyes

  • Eye discomfort

  • Sleep problems

  •  Shortened attention span

  •  Screen addiction

How to Develop Screen Time Rules

  • Pre-screen any media your child will view. Some media are not suitable for children, even with limited exposure.

  • Look for interactive screen time options. Screen time that is spent doing something active, such as creating digital art, practicing basic coding, or playing an educational game, is less harmful than screen time watching videos or television programs.

  • Use parental controls to limit the types of content your child can access as well as how long they can use those electronic devices.

  • Supervise your child as much as possible while they are online.

  • Discuss with your child the media they use. Ask them questions about what they are seeing and offer an outside perspective to help them fully explore the subject matter.

There are many tools available to help parents enforce screen time limits and content restrictions for their children. Please click the link here on how to enforce screen time on smart phones, game consoles, television and computers and follow these easy steps. Follow the ‘enforcing screen time’ for this information.

Please click here for further information on places to look for help, teaching good behaviour online, Teaching and Encouraging Digital Literacy and tips to Reduce Children’s Screen Time.



Information on the program- Squiggle whilst you wiggle

Squiggle Whilst You Wiggle is an early writing program created by a Shonette Bason-Wood. Squiggle Whilst You Wiggle incorporates dance, music and large movements to help children develop the fine muscle control they need for writing.  They will learn a new gross motor movement to a piece of music while holding 'flappers' (bits of fabric) while dancing along to the music. The children then transfer these movements to floor level and swap their flappers for writing tools (crayons/pens etc) to make marks, this could be in foam, on paper, in sand etc.  They will then use this action to think of letters they can form that use this shape.  These sessions are great fun but most importantly help your child to be confident mark makers.


Shonette Bason-Wood is incredibly fun, motivating and excites the children to engage in this program. Its all about mark making and Shonette will show you how to develop children's writing in a fun and exciting and extremely active way. 


How to Squiggle Whilst You Wiggle at home? 

The staff at Little Leaps have engaged in training for the program but if you would like to try it at home watch the videos below, grab some flappers (could be tissues or bits of material), find some mark making tools and turn the music up!  Once you have completed the movements and the mark making see which letters you can see on your paper. If you search 'Squiggle Whilst You Wiggle Music' on Youtube you will find a range of songs to enjoy while you are Squiggling. 

For example please click here to be directed to a video for part 1 of the program. 

Information on the program- Dough Disco

During welcome time we incorporate Dough Disco into our morning and afternoon routine. Dough disco involves moulding dough in time to music and performing different actions such as rolling it into a ball, flattening it, putting each individual finger into the dough, rolling it into a sausage and squeezing it. The children copy an adults actions in time to the music. Our main focus is to improve fine motor skills😀 one of our staff members studied dough disco for their university dissertation and therefore have seen the positive impacts this can have 😀 If you would like to do this activity with your child please click here for a playdough recipe. 

Please click here for an example video.






Bucket time

Information on Bucket Time

At nursery we complete a session of bucket time as part of our everyday routine. Bucket time is created by Gina Davies, with the aim of developing children’s shared attention skills in a group setting. During bucket time, the children are provided with motivating and visually exciting experiences that encourage them to focus their attention for extended periods of time and to take part in an adult-led group activity. We have found this has had a very positive impact on the children here at Little Leaps.

Bucket Time can be a very useful tool for any children who struggle to engage with adult-led activities and to focus their attention.



There are 4 stages to Bucket time, please click here for an example of a bucket time session.


Once you are familiar with the structure of the sessions, you can lead your own sessions using items you have at home.

Stage 1: The bucket. The aim of the objects explored from within the bucket is to grab the attention of the child with visually motivating and stimulating items. The child will gradually learn to focus on the adult and the activity they have chosen, watching what they are doing more consistently.

Stage 2: Attention builder. The aim in this stage is to extend the amount of time that the child is able to focus for, introducing activities that build anticipation. 

At both of these stages:

  • The adult is aiming to be the most motivating and interesting thing in the room. Try to remove other distractions and motivators where possible. 

  • The child is watching the adult, not carrying out the actions themselves. Only the adult touches the objects used. At later stages, turn-taking and independent exploration are introduced.

  • Use minimal language, focusing on simple keywords which describe the current action you are carrying out.


Parent Information Page

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