There is a lot of fantastic work happening in our community and there is no shortage of talent and creativity among our early years sector. Have a look at some of the amazing activities below that are engaging the minds of young learners throughout the District of Thunder Bay. Consider how these activities reflect the four foundations of How Does Learning Happen.

As an example, the foundation Engagement encourages educators to facilitate opportunities for children to learn through exploration, play, and inquiry. Furthermore, “the environment plays a key role in the quality of children’s exploration and play. Indoor and outdoor spaces, materials, and furnishings (including how they are positioned), accommodations to ensure equitable learning opportunities and participation for children with special needs, as well as the general design of the space, and the organization of time, all have a significant influence on children’s level of engagement and the possibilities for in-depth exploration and learning” (HDLH, 2014, p. 36).

We encourage you to reflect on your programs using the questions below. Additionally, you may be interested in sharing these at a staff meeting or having educators reflect in a journal. We also welcome you to share your reflections with us if you would like us to reflect with you.

Questions for Reflection:

  • If we see all children as curious, competent, and capable of complex thinking, how will this be reflected in the environment?
  • How could greater complexity and challenge be integrated into the environment? (p. 39)
  • Consider how the environment and experiences that you provide for children engage them. What draws them in?
  • What areas of the environment do not attract children? Why might this be? What changes might be needed? (p. 39)

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