We actively recognise and value the environment as the ‘third teacher’
Taranganba Early Learning Centre aims to provide an environment which reflects community contexts and provides comfort and security. We offer programmes which foster and challenge children’s strengths and interests, with educators who value children as successful, competent and capable learners.
“Childhood is not a race to see how quickly a child can read, write and count. Childhood is a small window of time to learn and develop at the pace which is right for each individual child.” Anonymous
With the vision of developing and sustaining positive and meaningful partnerships with families, professionals and community we are actively advocating and implementing holistic programmes for children to become effective community members of the future.
In relation to educational program and practice:
- We are committed to a play-based curriculum. We believe in a child-initiated, adult-facilitated programme where children are offered opportunities to develop dispositions which will be the foundation for lifelong learning. We will celebrate children’s agency and plan for further opportunities for children to succeed;
- All curriculum decisions are based on the approved learning frameworks;
- We will actively recognise and value the environment as the third teacher, as described by Reggio Emilia: “Learning environments engage and foster a sense of ownership and respect when they are aesthetically pleasing, reflect the identity and culture of children and families, and encourage a connection to place”;
- We will actively promote reflective and consultative processes to ensure meaningful communications with families are established and maintained in contexts where time management is a constraint for many families.
In relation to children’s health and safety:
- We promote children’s health and aim to support children and families in times of illness/ trauma and other incidents;
- We embed healthy eating and physical activity into programmes for children, entitled “Get Up and Grow”;
- We provide environments that protect children physically and support them emotionally, but still foster challenges and risk taking;
- We seek to ensure professional development, allowing educators to identify and respond to incidents/accidents and trauma using current practices.
In relation to the physical environment:
- We aim to design and develop physical environments which foster and promote:
- Active engagement – environments which stimulate the senses, offer open-ended materials, provide a balance of experiences (active, reflective, small group, larger group), provide inclusive and flexible access, promote sustainable practices (reuse, recycle, repurpose), and offer a balance between the familiar and the unknown ( challenging/novel);
- Emotional security – we empower children to make choices, supporting feelings of security (personal spaces, appropriate sized furniture) and respecting children as collaborative owners of the environment;
- We provide a balance of natural and man-made elements within the environment.
In relation to staffing:
- We aim to enhance children’s learning and development and ensure their safety and wellbeing, through a commitment to consistent and effective staffing arrangements;
- We strive to embed professional standards in our practices, interactions and relationships. We will foster collaborative opportunities in which we can affirm, challenge, support and learn from each other to continually improve our skills. In relation to relationships with children:
- We value respectful and equitable relationships where each child is supported to build and maintain sensitive and responsive relationships with other children and adults;
- We strive to provide an inclusive environment where educators are responsive to each child’s individual needs, supporting them to feel a sense of belonging within the service;
- We acknowledge children’s learning as integrated and interconnected and recognise the connections between children, families and communities. In relation to collaborative partnerships with families and the community:
- We acknowledge that family are the first and most important influence on children and are committed to developing and maintaining respectful, supportive and collaborative relationships with families and the broader community;
- We support and welcome parents’ interests and involvement into the community of our service;
- We value and support families’ hopes and dreams for their children;
- We are dedicated to supporting families in their parenting role and respecting their values and beliefs about child learning;
- We are committed to collaborating with other organisations and service providers to enhance children’s learning and wellbeing;
- We recognise and value the traditional owners of the land upon which the service is located and endeavour to raise awareness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities.
In relation to leadership and service management:
- We strive to promote a positive organisational culture and build a professional learning community;
- We are committed to ongoing continuous improvement of service quality and practice;
- We aim to embed quality systems that contribute to the effective management of a quality service.