Our Unique Educational Curriculum
Our Early Childhood Education Curriculum is unique, and has been carefully crafted to include the best of contemporary educational and care theories and practices. It incorporates many enrichment features. The Curriculum is a balance of a structured Montessori Program and globally recognised excellent Early Childhood Education philosophies and practices. We research current, as well as time tested theories and best practices in Early Education and Care, and explore the optimal ways to blend them into our program.
Our Education program was rated as Exceeding the National Quality Standard in our last Assessment. Our commitment to ongoing quality improvement, through research and staff Professional Development, was praised by the Assessor.
Our unique Kindergarten Education Program is approved by the Department of Education and Child Development and the Universal Access Program. It is delivered by two registered, 4 year degree, Early Childhood Teachers. At the Kindergarten we have an emphasis on assisting the children with the skills, dispositions, social and emotional attributes which contribute to a successful transition to school. We co-ordinate with local primary schools, and the feedback we receive is that children are “more than ready for school”.
Our Centre Philosophy is the foundation of our Educational Program. Our Educators share our belief in children’s innate abilities and inborn drive to learn. Our picture of the child aligns with the Reggio Emilia philosophy. Each child is regarded as being strong, competent, full of resources and the constructor and co-constructor of their own knowledge and understanding. We also believe that children are creative, curious, full of ideas and theories. They are valued members of our Kindergarten Community.
We utilise the Vision, Principles, Practices, and Outcomes of the Nationally mandated Early Years Learning Framework, when formulating our programs for each age group. The Early Years Learning Framework designates play based learning, which is centred around the children’s interests. It also recognises the crucial role of families in the education of their children. The Framework includes the requirement for intentional teaching, as well as allowing for freedom to follow emerging themes and interests of the children. It specifies a holistic and individualised approach to the care and education of each child. It endorses our belief that the well-being of each child in our care is an essential for their learning. At our Centre children thrive in the happy, friendly, caring environment.
The Learning Outcomes from the Early Years Learning Framework are designed to capture the integrated and complex learning and development of all children across the birth to five years age range. The outcomes are:
• Children have a strong sense of identity
• Children are connected with and contribute to their world
• Children have a strong sense of well-being
• Children are confident and involved learners
• Children are effective communicators
Our Educational Program is additionally enhanced with a Montessori Program, delivered by an experienced, qualified Montessori Early Childhood Education Teacher. Montessori Philosophy also aligns well with our own beliefs, and supplies the added value of a structured learning program. Through using specially designed materials, the children gain hands on knowledge of Mathematics, Language, and Spatial concepts. Practical Life activities, which focus on children’s self help and independence in every day experiences, are integrated into the Program and activities across the day. We work with the children with the Sensorial, Language, Mathematics, and Cultural materials. Children’s sequential progress in each area is carefully monitored and recorded. Montessori education is integrated into the holistic program.
The Curriculum is enhanced with dance, music, drama, arts and creativity, physical activities, languages, signing, excursions and visits from community helpers such as visiting the fire station, children’s farm, Burns Trust, dental programs and multi-cultural experiences. We have a special music and movement program which is very popular.
Our lovely outdoor area caters to the developing of the full range of physical skills. The lawn area provides free space to run and play, and the pathways are good for bike riding, which encourages skill development and social play. The nature yard encourages exploration, experimenting, sensory experiences and creativity. The sandpit is popular, as is the digging patch. The extensive verandah can be used for quiet activities and pretend and role playing.
Crafting a balanced educational program which combines all these elements is a complex task. Our Educators have ongoing professional development at workshops and conferences to enrich their knowledge. All Educators reflect on their practice, and collaborate with each other and families to ensure optimal outcomes for each child.
Observations in all areas of children’s development and education are recorded regularly. We have access to external professionals we can call if the Educators and family have concerns in any area of children’s development.
We aspire to partner with parents and families, in the care and education of their children. We ask for, and value feedback and comments from parents, and their advice to us regarding their own children. We send digital records and photos to parents regularly, and give verbal updates on pick-up and drop off. Parents are welcome to book time to speak to the Educators for more information sharing, and we have regular nights where parents confer with us about their children’s progress.