These years are a critical time for learning and development, when children acquire essential foundation skills and knowledge and when brain development is at its peak. The framework recognises that children’s first and most important learning happens with their family. It supports a partnership between families and all professionals who support their learning and development throughout this period.
The Victorian Framework uses five outcomes to describe the key elements of children’s learning and development. These are:
For more information, see Learning frameworks birth to eight years
The Early Years Learning Framework forms the foundation for ensuring that children in all early childhood education and care settings experience quality teaching and learning. It has a specific emphasis on play-based learning and recognises the importance of communication and language (including early literacy and numeracy) and social and emotional development. The Framework has been designed for use by early childhood educators working in partnership with families, children's first and most influential educators.
At Geelong Children’s Centre we provide a child and family centred practice. We endeavour to provide a welcoming, caring, inclusive and supportive environment to all children and their families. We embrace and support children of all skills, abilities and cultures; acknowledging children’s personal, family and cultural histories shape their learning for development. We view the whole child as an active citizen, capable of learning and contributing to their world.
Environmental education is important for our children in the early years so they are able to grow up with the skills, knowledge and attitudes to take environmentally responsible actions for our future. We integrate environmental awareness and sustainable practices throughout our service by embedding it in our programs. We encourage families to participate in our sustainable practices.
Every child has a fundamental right to high quality education and care. Both the National Curriculum (Being Becoming Belonging) and the Victorian Curriculum frameworks (Victorian Early Years Learning & Development Framework) are integral to our program. To enable each child to reach their full potential an ongoing cycle of planning, documenting and evaluating informs our program. Educators respond to children’s ideas and play, and use intentional teaching to scaffold and extend each child’s learning, which is recorded in individual learning plans. We recognise and support the varied learning styles of individual children. Reflective practice maximises opportunities for children to grow both as individuals and as a group.
Our philosophy of teaching embodies emergent curriculum. Emergent curriculum develops from exploring what is relevant, interesting and personally meaningful to children. An Emergent Curriculum constantly evolves in the response to children’s changing needs and interests, parental and community interests and concerns, and educator’s priorities. Each of these key elements shapes the direction of the program for future learning. Our goal is to provide a program that openly shares child initiated and intentional teaching practices, and that each child and their family is highly valued and supported to optimise each child’s individuality and their developmental outcomes.
At Geelong Children’s centre we use a digital software program called Educa which provides the early childhood professionals with a secure, simple and fast way to document and share learning. Using Educa, we create an ePortfolio for each child where learning stories, observations and updates are shared with families. Educa bridges the communication gap, strengthening relationships and promoting collaboration between the families and the educators. Parents have easy, instant access to their children’s learning stories from anywhere and can contribute to their education and learning.