Early Years Scotland Feature

Early Years Scotland Magazine – Spring 2019

Remind me what you are doing here again? I hear you all ask. Well, now I can direct you to this short piece I wrote for Early Years Scotland!

“Shaddai Tembo introduces himself and talks about his research degree at the University of the West of Scotland, in partnership with Early Years Scotland”

Hello everyone. My name is Shaddai and I am pleased to be introducing myself within this particular edition on STEM in the early years. My own experience trying to discuss technologies with parents have often ended in me being told about ‘the good old days before internet, where kids played outside all day long!’. Of course, times have changed, technology is everywhere and is certainly not going away. It is better to be working with, rather than against such changes.

I’m new to Scotland, having moved up from Bristol with my partner in October where I recently completed my Masters in Social Science Research Methods at the University of Bristol. My background is in early years and family support work, where I have been employed in a variety of settings. I also oversaw the Bristol Men in Early Years Network, working to address the gender imbalance within the profession and am proud to have been a Learning Ambassador for Bristol Learning Cities.

I have relocated to begin my research degree at the University of the West of Scotland, in partnership with Early Years Scotland. You may have seen the recent news that Scotland will become the first country in the world to embed LGBTI inclusive education into their curriculum. This is positive step forward. Homophobia, biphobia, and transphobia remain a significant issue for young people in schools – a recent study found that nine in ten LGBTI Scots experience homophobia at school.

At the same time, these inequalities do not suddenly start in school; think about how important the first few years of our lives are in shaping who we become in later life. My argument is that, through placing a critical lens on practices in the early years, we might better understand how we can disrupt inequalities in later life.


Instead of gathering dust on an old bookshelf, this research carries practical implications in provoking new knowledges for early years practitioners.

I am looking forward to this partnership with Early Years Scotland. Instead of gathering dust on an old bookshelf, this research carries practical implications in provoking new knowledges for early years practitioners. This is a project I am passionate about and optimistic for.

I look forward to meeting many of you across the next few years and working together to think about how we can shed a light on issues often considered irrelevant to the lives of young children.

Sign up to Early Years Scotland today to see this full issue on STEM in the Early Years!

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