Play Based Learning
Everyday activities can be fun learning opportunities. Pretending, creating and helping allows your child to explore, discover, negotiate, take risks, create meaning and solve problems – all the important foundations for developing literacy, numeracy and social skills. Play helps children learn about themselves and where they fit in the world. Evidence shows that play can support learning across physical, social, emotional and intellectual areas of development.
Play based learning is central to the Australian Government’s Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF), and while it may sound simple and easy, play-based learning is a complex form of natural enquiry that requires an experienced educator who knows each child’s overall development, emerging strengths and interests.
Through play-based learning, skilled educators can introduce and reinforce concepts we want children to learn in a way that engages each child’s interests.
At Children’s Village, a day spent digging in our sandpit, selecting a book for quiet reading, running or riding around the playground with a friend, watering the garden, dressing up and then building a city out of blocks is a day spent engaged in play based learning.
An emergent curriculum is child-led and educator-framed, where educators observe your child and take into account their interests, understandings, and aspirations when planning activities and projects. Instead of being set in stone, these learning programs are flexible and responsive, evolving over time to meet your child's spontaneous and changing needs. Children have a say in what they learn and educators use children’s changing interests to actively promote knowledge building.
Educators at Children’s Village form relationships with children to get to know your child, listen to their ideas, give them the opportunity to follow their interests, extend children’s ideas through intentional teaching strategies to build on your child’s previous learning and extend on their current interests.
As well as being responsive to your child an emergent curriculum also embeds other factors such as families interests and concerns, the physical and social environment, the centre’s philosophy but also educators interests and priorities.
How can an emergent curriculum benefit your child?
Interest Based Learning
Interest-based child learning opportunities include activities where child preferences, things a child likes to do, and things that make a child smile and laugh are the building blocks for learning new skills and abilities. Research on child learning shows that interest-based child learning is considerably more effective when compared to noninterest-based child learning. Interest-based child learning includes experiences that:
At Children’s Village we provide an environment where children can make choices about their play and learning, selecting equipment for play off the shelf, freely choosing areas they would like to explore, or speaking with educators about what they would like to do next, be it today, tomorrow or ‘next time’.
Engaging in interest-based child learning opportunities are effective for promoting children’s acquisition of:
We record and collect each child’s experiences, observations, ideas and creative expressions to help us build a rich and individual learning program. Programs are assessed daily so that educators can make adjustments to the materials available and to the strategies used to best support the children’s learning.
Children are active learners and they learn naturally through exploration – by touching, moving, listening, seeing and experiencing. Our educator’s roles are to support and enrich your child’s learning by:
Making learning ‘visible’ – that is, by using cameras, video recorders and written observations to document your child’s thoughts and ideas as they learn. We collect their experiences, comments, ideas, learning stories, photos, and observations. Our educators use this information to assess children based on the Early Years Learning Framework as well as to develop an individually tailored learning program for all children.
Parents are encouraged to contribute information about what their child is doing and learning outside Children’s Village as this continuity between home and early learning can greatly enhance your child’s learning and development.