PROGRAM PRACTICES

AIM - All children need to feel that they are valued as individuals and capable of achieving their full potential. We aim to provide a program that is individually and developmentally appropriate with children’s home language, culture, religious beliefs and interests incorporated.

RATIONALE - At Engadine Gumnuts we acknowledge that children of all ages learn in a variety of ways and vary in their capabilities. We believe in fostering children’s learning and development by encompassing the practices outlined in the Early Years Learning Framework.

We promote children’s learning by:

Adopting holistic approach

Children’s physical, personal, social, cognitive, emotional and spiritual wellbeing are observed in relation to the five learning outcomes stated in the EYLF framework ie

  1. Children have a strong sense of identity
  2. Children are connected with and contribute to their world
  3. Children have strong sense of wellbeing
  4. Children are confident and involved learners

Being responsive to children

All children are observed in relation to the ELYF outcomes with Educators being responsive to their ideas, interests and play. Educators record this information in individual journals through observations, photos and work samples which are then reflected upon to allow educators to build on children’s strengths, skills and knowledge.

Planning and implementing learning through play

Children are given the opportunity to discover, create, improvise and imagine through planned and spontaneous play experiences and routines with educators, peers and the environment. Educators take the time to sit and converse with children to extend their thinking in a supportive environment. Educators adopt the ‘solution chart’ during experiences where supporting the inclusion of all in play is required to ensure fair play and positive ways of dealing with conflict.

Intentional teaching

Educators look at each child’s needs and interests and will plan objectives to meet these needs/interests by providing experiences which challenge and extend children’s thinking and learning through modelling, demonstrations, open questioning, problem solving and engaging in shared thinking. These experiences are documented in the child’s individual journal with educators given allocated programming time each week to plan extension experiences.

Creating physical and social learning environments that have a positive impact on children’s learning

Educators program and provide an indoor and outdoor environment which allows for a balanced opportunity for quiet time, individual, small and large group times, and adequate rest periods. The environment covers fine and gross motor skills, art and craft, music, language, math and science, nutritional education.

Valuing the cultural and social contexts of children and their families

Provisions are included in the program to develop positive attitudes and awareness towards cultural differences. We acknowledge that each child comes to the centre bearing their own cultural practices and we value the importance that these practices have on the child, their family and the wider community. Special activities are arranged during the year to allow all family members and other members of the community to participate in the centres activities. These include Crazy Hair Day (cystfibrosis), Easter, Chinese New Year, Australia Day, etc to develop awareness and understanding.

Providing for continuity in experiences and enabling children to have successful transition

Educators take the time to have friendly interactions with children individually and respond to them warmly. Through these interactions educators endeavor to ensure that children feel safe, secure, confident and included. Educators plan an orientation and transition process whilst also collecting updated children’s profiles to encourage a smooth transition from the home setting to Engadine Gumnuts. During this period Educators assist children in the understanding of routines, expectations and begin to establish relationships between educators and peers. News time is another opportunity provided for all children to share home and out of Child Care experiences with peers and Educators.

Assessing and monitoring children’s learning to inform provision and to support children in achieving learning outcomes.

Observations are documented on each child within an ongoing cycle with developmental summaries being completed every 6 months to determine where each child is at and what they understand. This information is then discussed in partnership with families to communicate child’s learning and plan effectively for future learning.

Programs and experiences are evaluated daily with Educators recording one special activity that each child has been involved each day they attend Gumnuts. These activities are written in the daily diary and are loaded onto the children individualised online childcarers journal and they are also displayed next to the notice board in the foyer for families to view. All previous plans are available for parents to view in each room and on request

All records are confidential and remain the property of the centre. Individual journals are available for parents to look at on request and will be discussed on Parent/teacher week. Parents are encouraged to ask any questions, we welcome their interest and

At Gumnuts child care centre we strive to provide a high quality curriculum based on the Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF). Our programmes are centred holistically around the children, therefore aiming to reflect the children’s developmental needs, interests, home life, cultures, etc. As educators we ensure that our children have a sense of belonging, being, and becoming. We reflect this in our programmes by following the key principles of EYLF and work towards achieving learning outcomes through the use of our own teaching practices.

All staff contribute to the observing and planning process within our rooms. Programming at Gumnuts is an evolving process and can be done on a day to day basis, spontaneously and based upon observations. Our evaluation of the day’s programme is written each day and is used to direct our subsequent programmes. The programme and evaluation also includes examples of spontaneous play and children’s choice. Staff regularly reflect upon the programme and care they are providing and make changes or adaptations if needed.

Parents have the opportunity to comment on the programme and provide feedback about the documentation of their children’s learning, service routines and activities, and curriculum decision making via parent/ teacher meetings, email, and our suggestion box. All developmental records (including daily program and individual observations) identify skills and outcomes either achieved or working towards by the children. These records are available at all times for parents to observe and be discussed at parent/ teacher meetings. These records are confidential at all times.

Indoor and outdoor activities refers to uninterrupted time for the children to engage in play based learning with a number of activities and areas. These activities allow the children to extend their developmental skills and promote children’s identity, connection with the community, wellbeing, confidence in learning, and effective communication skills. The children have the opportunity to make choices and lead the program. They are encouraged to follow their interests, explore, experiment and revisit with what’s on offer in these areas.

When specific interests are displayed staff will add equipment/ resources to assist in extending their learning and development. Throughout our indoor and outdoor activity times our staff use their role as educators to extend the children’s learning through the use of scaffolding and spontaneous intentional teaching. Group times also make up our daily program allowing all educators in the centre to implement teaching practices such as intentional teaching to extend the children’s learning.