An emergent curriculum and co-created learning where learning takes place through long term project work which combines individual and group collaboration.
‘Documentation is not about what we do, but what we are searching for.’ Carla Rinaldi
Under a project theme our focus is upon being responsive to children’s interests in order to create meaningful learning experiences and is a balance of children and adults working together. We place great importance on what we have observed to enhance learning opportunities allowing children to play, invent and develop their own ideas.
Keeping parents involved -current experiences are documented through room floor books and individual children’s ‘Learning Journeys’, boards in each room will illustrate how projects are developing for those children.
PLAYING & EXPLORING
- Representing Ideas and Experiences
- Taking Risks
- Sense of Achievement
CREATING & CRITICAL THINKING
- Having own ideas
- Making links
Block play provides a structure and foundation for children to learn to persevere, develop self-control and delay gratification, expand curiosity, gain self-confidence, and learn to overcome failure. Through exploration with blocks children become competent learners in all areas of cognitive, physical, social and emotional development as well as developing mathematical concepts. Blocks are especially beneficial when children are allowed to freely explore and manipulate the blocks in a variety of engaging ways.
Children learn the skills of using resources and materials creatively to represent their ideas and theories, helping them to explore their thinking in different ways. We begin with painting a self-portrait to help children develop the appropriate skills such as understanding colour choices.
Children use the large drum to explore rhythm as well as movement. Adults and children work together to develop critical thinking skills and make discoveries as part of a learning group. They set rules for working and learn to negotiate and reason with each other.
The mud kitchen creates the opportunity to practice social skills and help children make sense of the world. It encourages creative thinking, helping to develop positive dispositions and improving cognitive function. Children use everyday language to talk about size, weight, capacity and position whilst exploring the characteristics of everyday kitchen objects and using everyday language to describe them.
Footprint Woods Visit
Woods visits impact on children’s confidence, social skills, language and communication, motivation and concentration, physical skills, and knowledge and understanding of the world. Children begin to feel confident about taking risks and trying things out. Asking questions and putting forward their own ideas whilst working as part of a group.
Water exploration is an inquiry into the properties of water; adults embrace children’s curiosity and encourage questions and problem solving as part of science exploration. Children can see how they affect the properties of water through their play.
As part of our ‘Food for Life’ initiative we grow some of our own fruit and vegetables. Through gardening children become more resilient, confident, eager to learn and develop healthier lifestyles. Gardening has an impact on children’s literacy and mathematical development as well as leading to being more active, having an inquisitive approach to learning and improved problem solving skills.
Light and Dark Exploration
Children are naturally curious; light and dark exploration acts as an open ended project for children to develop their own ideas and theories. We provide the space and time to explore with a variety of resources such as light boxes, projectors, torches and bubble tubes; making discoveries about shadows, colour, light, cause and effect. Children use their knowledge and skills to make connections across the areas of learning.
We place emphasis upon children’s levels of well being and involvement alongside the Characteristics of Effective Learning (CofEL). Across the Centre we use the Early Excellence Assessment Tracker (EExAT)which has been specifically designed to have a distinct pedagogical purpose. These assessments are in two parts; one that is indicative of children’s learning behaviours (CofEL) and one that captures key indicators of children’s age-related development across the areas of learning. This combination of assessments provides us with appropriate and meaningful information to enable us to identify, plan for, and support significant aspects of children’s learning and development.
Throughout the Centre we plan using the Characteristics of Effective Learning alongside the Prime and Specific Areas of Learning (The Early Years Foundation Stage – read here).
Our policies cover every part of Centre life. They address the practical implications of how to achieve our vision, ensuring that agreed values underpin day-to-day decisions and actions.
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