Welcome back to “Quick Thinking,” our new series about the underlying thinking about Early Childhood Education. Our first entry in the series was about defining what successful Early Childhood Education looks like, to us. We settled on a pretty decent definition: Early Childhood Education is about engaging young children into their world, fostering curiosity by creating environments for children to safely learn in.
You can see through all of our Centre Stories that we work hard at creating those safe spaces for children to learn. Our environments, especially for our toddler and preschool programs, are designed to appeal to as many interests as possible. We have different areas for different pursuits: art, building, reading spaces… all of which are stocked and ready to be interacted with by a curious child.
The crucial element of our environments is our staff, the Early Childhood Educators. They not only make sure that the children are playing safely, but they also help to foster the creative spirit. They’re constantly watching to see what grabs the children’s interests, and then they design activities to stoke those interests. Go back and look through our Centre Stories, and you’ll notice that they all begin with our ECEs building off of established interests displayed by the children.
This is how learning happens.
Being receptive to your child’s curiosity goes a long way to fostering a safe and caring learning environment. It shows your child that their interests and experiences have value and are seen as important by you.
Create a space that fosters learning, create opportunities for children to explore, and then build experiences focused on their interests. It’s not so hard!