Learning Outcome 4: ‘Children are confident and involved learners’ is without doubt the most popular learning outcome because it refers to learning, but as the other posts in this series demonstrates there is learning opportunities in every outcome. Here’s 5 tips to support children with learning outcome 4.
- Providing a role model for curiosity: Enjoying play alongside children allows them to develop a positive disposition for learning because it is meaningful, fun and engaging. By making learning child focused and enjoyable we can support children to enjoy exploring their world and the uncertainty of how things work. Engaging with children while playing and verbalising your curiosity can allow them to develop an understanding of how learning works, such as “I wonder what will happen if…?” or “Hmm, I wonder how that happened?”
- Allow children to be creative with open ended resources: By using open ended resources children can develop their own uses for them and demonstrate their own ideas and plans into the experience. Structured resources can limit children’s creativity and also cause frustration if they are not developmentally able to complete the activity, whereas open ended resources support all ages and developmental abilities as children can use them in a range of ways.
- Understand how children conduct research: Children conduct research by checking to see how their world works. If children can replicate results then they understand how things work. The more unpredictable or flexible an item is the more research needs to be conducted to understand the properties, such as balls, play dough, paint, loose parts, clay. Research does not have to be looking up information on the internet, or conducting a formal experiment, it can be everyday exploration.
- Using projects that allow children to transfer their knowledge: By building learning opportunities around children’s interests through projects or learning journeys children can transfer their knowledge about the interest into different situations. They can also bring different skills and knowledge into their area of interest such as music or story telling.
- Trust children to lead the learning and support them with this: The less control adults have over the program allows for children to have some agency and control, which in turn provides children the opportunity to resource their own learning. This requires the resources to be made available for the children, including accessibility to educators who are present and open to children’s questions.
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