Curriculum decision-making contributes to each child’s learning and development outcomes in relation to their identity, connection with community, wellbeing, confidence as learners and effectiveness as communicators
Firstly, what is in a curriculum? The EYLF explains it perfectly.
in the early childhood setting curriculum means ‘all the interactions, experiences, activities, routines and events, planned and unplanned, that occur in an environment designed to foster children’s learning and development’. EYLF Page 9
The second part of the element 1.1.1 comes directly from the five learning outcomes in the EYLF.
(a) the child will have a strong sense of identity;
(b) the child will be connected with and contribute to his or her world;
(c) the child will have a strong sense of wellbeing;
(d) the child will be a confident and involved learner;
(e) the child will be an effective communicator.
You will see the above is the five Learning Outcomes from the EYLF. The EYLF gives educators the exact ways to make these curriculum decisions by giving us the right-hand side indicators.
“Educators promote this learning, for example, when they:”
Above copied from the EYLF book
With this knowledge the element is easy to exceed in with a simple two-part process. Firstly, look at what makes curriculum, then use the right -hand side of the EYLF Learning Outcomes for the decision.
Below is an example from ‘interactions ‘
We will represent the right-hand side of the EYLF learning Outcomes showing what the educator is doing to extend children’s knowledge in blue type. This is your planning/decision process and it shows how you meet element 1.1.1
The Slippery slide
Today Iylah, Charlie and Zayne used the foam blocks as a slippery slide. They transferred knowledge from one setting to another by recognising the shape of the blocks to be the same as a slide.
Sam sat with the children assisting them and talking to them as they shared happiness and humour with each other. Iylah climbed to the top of the block as Sam assisted her to slide down while sitting. Charlie knew he wanted to slide on his belly. He laid down and giggled as he slid to the bottom.
Iylah watched Charlie slide on his belly and wanted to try. She held her hand out towards Sam for assistance. Sam supported Iylah to construct multiple solutions to problems and use different ways of thinking by encouraging her to work out how to move to lay on her belly to slide down the block by herself. Sam suggested Iylah move backwards to make room for her hands to support her to turn around. Iylah had many turns at the slide and experimented with different ways to go. Learning outcome 4.2, 4.3 & 3.1
Look at the examples and start writing like this to show how you are meeting element 1.1.1.
Curriculum – Interactions
Today Sam (Educator), Carter and Adrian used the open ended resources to investigate, take apart, assemble, invent and construct their ideas and made a game. Sam and Adrian worked together to make a ramp out of the planks. Carter saw the opportunity to use this as a ramp to push down some open ended resources like a yoghurt tub which was square in shape. Sam provided Carter and Adrian with exploratory experiences with natural and processed materials.
When the yoghurt tub didn’t roll but slide down the ramp Sam provided Carter and Adrian with round tin cans, rocks, pinecones, milk lids, pom-poms and coffee cup lids to experiment and see if each resource rolled or slid down the makeshift plank ramp.
Adrian and Carter took turns at putting resources down the ramp and cheered each time the resource rolled down.
Learning outcome: 4.4
This morning in our outside playground Slader, Sarah and Aria initiated and joined in play experiences with their peers.
While sitting at the table Miss Ashlee suggested that the children put some sand on the table to draw. “Draw?” Aria repeated as she got a handful of sand and placed it on the table. Slader and Sarah then picked up a handful of sand also. Miss Ashlee spent time interacting and conversing with each child as she asked the children what pictures they were drawing. “Rainbow” Sarah said excitedly. “Patterns” Aria screamed with a big grin on her face. After Joey saw his friends having so much fun drawing he decided to join in. Both Joey and Slader shared smiles with Miss Ashlee.
Trial and Error
During group time Sam showed Nate, Patrick, Eva and Archie how static electricity works. Sam blew up a balloon and ripped up pieces of paper to create the activity.
Sam intentionally scaffolded the children’s understanding of static electricity by modelling scientific language, and talking to the children about how it works by charging the balloon up with friction using hair or fabric fibres where we can see it working as it attracts hair particles, and picks up pieces of paper.
To show the children how friction works, Sam demonstrated this by using the balloon, rubbed on hair which we saw it lift the hair pieces and lift the paper. Nate used the trial and error method to create friction by rubbing the balloon on his hair to lift the paper. When the paper didn’t lift he rubbed the balloon on his hair and asked Sam to help him. Sam provided assistance to help Nate create friction to lift the paper. He was quite excited to see he had created enough static electricity to cause the paper to stick to the balloon.
Who is in the box?
This morning Toddler 2 experienced hiding inside a large box. At first the children explored it. Then Cherie (educator) encouraged the children to take turns at being ‘Jack in the Box.’ When the flaps of the box were opened the child popped up and everyone said the child’s name. The children co-operated and worked collaboratively with the educator. Cherie showed genuine affection, understanding and respect for each child. Aaron, Eli, Eden, Ava and Kloe didn’t want to hop out of the box when their turn was up. The aim of the game was to promote listening and response to verbal cues. It also gave experience at turn taking as the children had to learn to wait for their turn.
Curriculum – Experiences
This morning while outside toddler 2 actively participated in group experiences and showed interest in their peers, while using their physical skills to engage in running races.
We began by running backwards and then we pretended to be different animals. When we were tigers the children began using their hands as claws and roaring like one as well. We soon then changed to elephants and the children would lift their arms up and pretend they were trunks swaying in the breeze.
Emma and Cody (educators) would model explict communication strategies to support children to initiate interactions and join in play and social experiences in ways that sustained productive relationships with other children. When monkeys we scratched under our arms and lastly, we slithered like snakes.
Emma and Cody provided a range of active and restful experiences throughout the morning and supported the children to make the appropriate decisions regarding participation. Emma
Curriculum – Routines
As a part of or daily routine we Olivia, Emma (educator) and Rachel (educator) watered the strawberries. Rachel enabled Olivia to care for and learn from the land. We talked to her and showed her how and why we water the plants so they can grow big and strong to produce flowers and fruit for us to eat.
Olivia felt the water as it spilled out from the spout with her hand. She giggled and said “cold.” She looked at Emma who smiled back as she formed a connection with educators.
Olivia explores the relationship with other living and non-living things by understanding that we as living things, need to water the plants so they can produce food for us. Olivia also explored the relationship between the non-living gardening tools needed to keep the living plants alive as they assist and provide care for it.
Our normal exercise routine was moved indoors today because it was wet and cold so Kymmy and Emma organised dance. The educators provided resources that enabled the children to express meaning using dance. The children used dance to express ideas and make meaning. We danced to the children’s favourite Baby Shark and some old favourites like Hokey Pokey. We went on to play musical chairs and pass the parcel. These games taught us spatial awareness and accentuated our listening skills.
Curriculum – Planned Activities
To extend upon the children’s interest in counting and numbers Miss Kymmy J gave the children some dice to roll. Ariah after rolling the dice was counting the numbers on them. Kymmy J recognises mathematical understandings that children bring to learning and builds on these in ways that are relevant to each child by drawing up a copy of the dots in the same pattern as the dice on an A4 piece of paper. Lydiah was able to apply her mathematical knowledge to problem solving, by helping Ariah, showing her which number matched her dice on the paper. When it was Lydiah’s turned she was very confident and told Ariah she didn’t need help. Chase was keen to have a go at rolling the dice and matching the numbers up too.
The children are enjoying the counting activities in the room.
Extending on mathematical ideas
This morning toddler two participated in a different activity with measuring different items from around the room.
Exceeding Theme Core
All educators work collaboratively with the educational leader, and regularly engage with families and the community, to consistently make curriculum decisions which maximise learning and development outcomes for every child in relation to their identity, connection with community, wellbeing, confidence as learners and effectiveness as communicators. All educators regularly reflect on practices to ensure they support the rights of every child to participate and achieve learning outcomes.
Where is your practice compared to the above statement?