Philosophy Statement

 The rights and interests of children are paramount in all decision-making processes at Riverside Preschool (‘the Preschool’).  We aim to provide a caring and supportive learning environment that reflects and values individuality and diversity.  We also aim to provide a happy, safe and stimulating environment where children are free to play, explore, discover and learn at their own pace with educators providing guidance and encouragement for each child.  All children will experience learning that is engaging and builds success for life.

 We believe that children:

  • Have lives characterised by belonging, being and becoming;

  • Are successful, capable, confident, resourceful, curious and eager learners;

  • Learn through play;

  • Have individual strengths, interests, prior experiences, needs and backgrounds;

  • Are individuals developing at their own pace and using their own learning style;

  • Are able to lead and guide their own play and learning;

  • Do not develop and grow in isolation;

  • That children have rights that need to be protected and upheld (United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child)

  • Are part of and learn in a wider social context; and

  • Bring their diverse experiences, perspectives, expectations, knowledge and skills to learning.

 A child’s community is:

  • Themselves;

  • Their family (immediate and extended);

  • The Preschool (peers and their families, educators and staff, and the Management Committee); and

  • Their local neighbourhood and the wider community.

 Our role as educators involves:

Working in partnership with families.  We believe that parents and family are the most important people in children’s lives and have the biggest impact on their learning;

·         Implementing the Early Years Learning Framework as a basis for our curriculum;

  • Being responsive to each child and making them feel welcome in the social group and community;

  • Assisting children to build a sense of identity and gain independence;

  • Forming secure, respectful and reciprocal relationships with children;

  • Developing collaborative relationships with families and incorporating their ideas into the curriculum;

  • Supporting families in their parenting role and respecting their values and beliefs about child rearing;

  • Encouraging children to follow their interests and extend their learning;

  • Being responsive to children’s strengths, abilities, interests and cultural competencies;

  • Implementing holistic practices that pay attention to children’s physical, personal, social, emotional and spiritual wellbeing, as well as cognitive aspects of learning;

  • Offering children realistic choices and the opportunities for children to lead their own learning;

  • Gathering, analysing and documenting information as evidence of what children know, can do and understand.  This is part of an ongoing cycle of planning, documenting and reflecting on children’s learning;

  • Respecting and appreciating diversity;

  • Facilitating an inclusive environment that allows children the time to express themselves, be creative, interact with resources, revisit experiences and learn about the world;

  • Fostering a sense of responsibility in each child, so that they know they are an individual but also part of a wider community to which they can contribute;

  • Ensuring the rights of children are upheld and that the safety and wellbeing of all children are protected;

  • Promoting each child’s confidence and wellbeing through experiences that promote success;

  • Using intentional teaching that challenges children’s thinking and knowledge;

  • Enhancing children’s communication skills so that they can express their feelings and needs in a manner that promotes cooperation;

  • Providing opportunities for children to make connections with the natural environment;

  • Seeking ways to build educators’ professional knowledge and develop reflective practices;

  • Working with other educators to create a collaborative work environment.  Team work is promoted at all times;

  • Reflecting on their own practices and using their reflections to make informed curriculum decisions;

  • Ensuring that continual improvement is embedded in educators’ actions, ensuring best practise for all children; and

  • Understanding how the Preschool’s local and wider community contributes to each child’s experiences.

 SOURCES

 Early Years Learning Framework for Australia 2009

 National Quality Standards 2011

 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child

 Early Childhood Australia- Code of Ethics 2016

Date endorsed:            April 2012

Date reviewed:            April 2013, April 2014 and September 2014

                                    January 2016

                                    January 2017