Learning From Home Guidebook
As COVID-19 impacts the Australian early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector, Glen Waverley Children’s Centre Coordinator Sarah Gandolfo and Educator Sujata Dalvi have been sharing their “remote learning program” for children under the age of 5, interviewing with Anthony Semann from Semann & Slattery, and contributing content for The Sector. Sarah and Sujata’s work will also be used to produce a practical video for educators across the state.
Connection and engagement has become the top priority for parents keeping their children at home. With feedback from her staff and the parents of the centre, Sarah realised that remote learning packs were not what was needed to keep young children engaged. “We didn’t need printouts and worksheets. We didn’t need to add to the burden that families were already experiencing,” Sarah explained. “What we needed to show families was that what they were already doing with their children was of value and may only need to be slightly modified or enhanced to align with our curriculum.”
From here, the Glen Waverley Children’s Centre Learning from Home guidebook was created. The book explains the benefit of learning through play, and how the educational activities done in a long day care setting can support what families are doing at home. The book is divided into curriculum areas and gives clear examples about how to assist children in achieving the VEYLDF Learning Outcomes in the home.
Glen Waverley Children’s Centre set up a new room on Storypark (their communication platform) to accompany the book. This is used to share links, ideas, videos and prompts for play-based learning in the home and has been a huge success. Engagement with the platform has increased, with families posting images and videos of their children playing at home and kindergarten children sharing videos with each other to stay connected.
To other childcare centres, Sarah has this advice. “Don’t add to a family’s workload. This is not about giving them extra things to do, but rather about making suggestions for play based learning that fit within a home learning environment.”
You can read the full article from The Sector here.