The Preschool Program

Play-based learning is the preferred method of learning for Early Childhood Centres. Play is what occurs when children are engaged in their own endeavors. When children are playing they are actively involved in pleasurable activities that they have freely chosen. They carry out the activity as if it were real, with a focus on the process rather than on any particular product. Play-based learning is when an environment is designed and constructed by Early Childhood Educators (ECEs) to allow learning to occur through play. The ECEs provide the environment, activities, devices, rules and scenarios for children to play, and the play that results is an avenue for children to acquire skills and construct knowledge.

Play is not just a way for children to have fun, use up excess energy, release pent up tension or relieve boredom.  As ECEs we adopt a play-based program because we believe that play is critical for children’s learning and it allows ECEs valuable insight into each child. We also choose a play-based learning program because we view play as an efficient and effective way for encouraging meaningful development in all developmental domains, including fine and gross motor, cognitive, social and emotional development.

The five learning and development outcomes we base our play-based program on are linked to the Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework. The outcomes are:

  • Children have a strong sense of identity
  • Children are connected with and contribute to their world
  • Children have a strong sense of wellbeing
  • Children are confident and involved learners
  • Children are effective communicators.

At Langwarrin Pre-school the educational program is based around a play based approach that is incorporated into an Emergent Curriculum. In an Emergent Curriculum ECEs develop and support children’s learning by implementing a program that is open-ended and flexible and reflects each child’s strengths, interests and needs. As ECEs get to know the children and their families, they learn more about each child and this learning influences programming and planning. Thus, the emergent curriculum is continually changing and evolving. Intentional teaching is used to enhance and extend the program and children’s learning and development. Intentional teaching is when the ECE has a learning focus in mind and uses strategies to support children’s learning in relation to this focus. ECEs may use intentional teaching for pre-learning opportunities (e.g. immersing the children in activities relating to the world and different cultures in the lead up to the Olympics) or as a strategy to support a spontaneous, teachable moment as it occurs during a Kinder session.

If you have any questions regarding the Program at Langwarrin Pre-school, please don’t hesitate to contact us.