Posted on February 23, 2021 / ELC
Belonging in the Early Years
Belonging in the Early Years is a commonly used word, it is part of our National Framework and curriculum, you could say, we live and breathe it. In a greater sense, belonging is understood as knowing where and with whom you belong, in the ELC it is our foundations.
In early childhood education, belonging is initiated with relationships. Relationships with our children, families, with each other and to Country. We acknowledge that in early childhood, and throughout our lives, relationships are crucial to forming a sense of belonging.
Developing a sense of belonging in the ELC begins with that first tour the child and their family take, we get to know them, develop a trusting relationship and find out what makes them unique. We incorporate their values, culture and beliefs into our curriculum and everyday practices.
When it is time for the children to begin their journey with us, we support and nurture their transition, getting to know one aspect of their home life with the intent of developing a closer bond. When it comes to their first week of school we ensure we are cementing their sense of ownership within the class, getting the children to create artwork for the room, taking photos for their lockers and making our rooms feel like their second home.
In Term One belonging is paramount to our start of our year to ensure the children are forming those initial relationships with one another, supporting their interdependence and defining identities. In a play-based setting this may look like painting and play dough, but it is through these activities we are intentionally encouraging interactions and planting the seeds of future friendships. Belonging in the ELC shapes who the children are and who they will become.
Pre-Prep A Teacher