At Carina Heights Child Care and Development we recognise that children learn through play therefore we strive to present a fun, nurturing and engaging environment which encourages children to grow holistically and form a lifelong love of learning.
It is believed that play shapes the structural design of the brain. We know that secure attachments and stimulation are significant aspects of brain development; play provides active exploration that assists in building and strengthening brain pathways. Play creates a brain that has increased 'flexibility and improved potential for learning later in life' (Lester & Russell, 2008).
Young children's play allows them to explore, identify, negotiate, take risks and create meaning. The intellectual and cognitive benefits of playing have been well documented. Children who engage in quality play experiences are more likely to have well-developed memory skills, language development, and are able to regulate their behaviour, leading to enhanced school adjustment and academic learning (Bodrova & Leong, 2005).
Our educational programs reflect the importance of play in early childhood, cultural diversity of the community, abilities of the children, and individual uniqueness, whilst incorporating the views of parents and the children attending the service. We base our educational programs on individual needs, supporting the development of the whole child: physically, socially, emotionally, and cognitively in a safe, caring and supportive environment through discovery, exploration and interaction with peers and educators. Incorporated in the program is the educators intentional teaching practices, the learning environment, the daily rhythm, group and individual goals and curriculum areas. The learning environment both inside and outside is carefully arranged so that children have access to a range of resources that challenge to develop new skills or practise recently acquired ones. Through observation and consultation with families, we regularly document children’s skills, interests and learning. These observations allow educators to set individual goals, devise strategies to achieve these goals, keep track of each child’s progress and plan and implement activities and experiences to extend learning and develop growth.Our programs are regularly evaluated and include feedback, suggestions, comments and views from families, children, educators, the community and recent industry research.
Observations of each child’s interactions, conversations, interests and work are recorded in a portfolio along with a journal of the rooms program and the associated curriculum areas. This information, together with information provided by families is recorded and reflected upon in relation to the principles, practice and learning outcomes of Belonging, Being & Becoming: The Early Years Learning Framework for Australia. This enables us to track each child’s progress and assess their learning throughout the year. Your child’s portfolio, the program journal, curriculum areas and daily rhythm are available for families to view any time.