Reconciliation Week is a reminder to embed teaching about our Indigenous history and culture in our ongoing curriculum – not just for one week or for one special activity. Our history is part of who we are. We need to understand how our country began so that we may continue to live in harmony with families of the first Australians. Today we celebrate Australia as a multicultural country where our similarities and differences are celebrated, where we can learn from and with each other and work together to look after country.
Throughout the ELC rooms we integrate Indigenous stories, pictures of our Indigenous people and Indigenous art, materials, tools, music and instruments into the children’s learning environment and experiences. We make frequent references to our Indigenous people as leading role models for sport, leadership, performing arts, teaching and models for respecting and caring for country.
I urge parents to talk about what they know of our Indigenous history and culture and, if necessary, find out more information and learn alongside your children. Adults need to model respect for differences so that children pick up a positive attitude to diversity.
Assessment in early childhood education
Assessment for children’s learning is defined by the Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) as: ‘a process of gathering and analysing information as evidence about what children know, can do and understand. It is part of an ongoing cycle that includes planning, documenting and evaluating children’s learning.’
In the ELC, educators in each room are guided by the EYLF. This framework provides us with key reference points against which children’s progress can be identified, documented and communicated to families, other early childhood professionals and educators in schools. Over time, educators can reflect on how children have developed, engaged with increasingly complex ideas, and participated in increasingly sophisticated learning experiences.
Assessments enable educators to plan effectively for children’s current and future learning. In Early Childhood we implement a range of assessments including recorded observations of the children as they work and play, portfolios including photos and work samples and language samples. Documentation of the children’s learning is crucial to our work as educators as it helps us to understand how to extend their thinking and engage them in learning.
During the next few weeks, parents have the opportunity to meet with educators to discuss their child’s learning and set goals for the rest of the year. For those children who are eligible to begin school next year this is an appropriate time to discuss your child’s readiness for school. We know that some skills can greatly enhance the child’s ability to thrive in the Prep setting. These include:
- the ability to sit with the group and remain focussed, ask questions and answer questions from the educator
- the ability to self-regulate their emotional response when they need to do something they don’t want to do, without a tantrum.
For more information about School Readiness please talk to your child’s teacher and read the handout provided near Oak and Bay Room notice boards.
End of term
The last day of this term, Friday 28 June, is a student free day in the Junior School. There will be no ELC on this day and the Childcare Room will be open only for children of school staff members.
Congratulations to the Kiing family as they welcome their new son Lucas: a young brother for Aidan who attends the three-day group in Music Room.
Acting Director of ELC Kew