One of our two areas of focus in our school improvement plan is to develop students as active participants in their own learning.
Since the beginning of the year our Early Childhood teachers have been involved in an Early Years initiative – Refocus teaching and learning. This initiative assists schools to deliver quality, evidence based early years’ pedagogy from birth to eight years in Tasmania.
Staff have re-connected to the principles of the Early Years Framework and have focused on ‘how to’ develop capable and competent learners. ECE staff have explored the importance of inquiry and play and how these can activate student ideas, and develop the ‘thinking child.’
1-2 Atkins/Sherriff enjoying working on their inquiry skills during numeracy block
“When we’re interested in what we’re learning, we pay closer attention; we process the information more efficiently; we employ more effective learning strategies, such as engaging in critical thinking, making connections between old and new knowledge, and attending to deep structure instead of surface features. When we’re interested in a task, we work harder and persist longer, bringing more of our self-regulatory skills into play.”
Annie Murphy Paul, 2013
Amazing play based learning experiences in Launching Into Learning and Prep Barnes/Youd
“Play is powerful and is the engine of learning in early childhood and as a vital force for young children’s physical, social, and emotional development is beyond question. Children in play-based kindergartens have a double advantage over those who are denied play: they end up equally good or better at reading and other intellectual skills, and they are more likely to become well-adjusted healthy people.”
Miller, E & Almon, J, 2009
We are committed to providing the best possible learning environment and ensuring high expectations for learners. Our future work in the ECE sector will explore how mathematical understandings can be developed through inquiry and play.