Our mission statement …
Berkeley Vale Pre-school provides an inclusive, high quality, not for profit, pre-school program for children aged 3 to 6 years. We work collaboratively with all children, families and the local community to ensure that we meet the needs of each individual child as they prepare for the transition from home to pre-school, and the transition from pre-school to school. We understand that the early childhood years are a critical period of learning whereby the life skills, interactions, relationships and experiences children are exposed to help create a strong foundation for life-long learning. Our pre-school is also committed to establishing, promoting and maintaining a culture of environmental sustainability.
Berkeley Vale Pre-school values the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. In particular to uphold a child’s right to a “good quality education” (Article 28), and be given the opportunity to “play and rest” (Article 31). Our educators and management committee support Early Childhood Australia’s Code of Ethics as a framework that supports our thinking, decision making and actions. We acknowledge how this complements the principles and practices within the Early Years Learning Framework and National Quality Standards.
Our team of educators identify with and incorporate a variety of theorist’s views and practices into our pre-school curriculum including:
- Vygotsky’s view of educators scaffolding children’s learning;
- Piaget’s views that children actively learn in different ways and at different ages and stages;
- Montessori’s view that children learn at their own pace and require repeated opportunities to practice and refine skills;
- Skinner’s views that educators break down learning tasks into smaller steps;
- Rogoff’s views that children learn through observing and imitation of other peers and educators;
- Bronfenbrenner’s views of providing for children’s learning in the here and now and;
- Steiner’s views that educators encourage children to resource their own learning, pursuing own interests and promoting creative imagination.
This philosophy underpins our daily practices. All policies are revised annually as part of our commitment to continuous improvement.
Reference: Early Years Learning Framework
Hunters Hill Pre-school Philosophy
Dorothy Wade Centre for Early Learning
- In relation to children we believe:
- Children belong within their family context and to their own cultural and community group;
- Children learn through play and hands-on learning;
- Children are inquisitive, resourceful, and risk takers;
- Children want to have fun;
Therefore we …
- Promote this sense of belonging by engaging in discussions with each child’s family to gain greater insight into the child and parental values and expectations of our service;
- Celebrate this sense of belonging by coming together to share special events like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Christmas. We also share daily meals, as well as small and whole group discussions and experiences. These provide children with opportunities to contribute to shared learning opportunities, collaborate with peers and develop talking and listening skills as well as turn taking and respect;
- Implement a play-based program that supports children’s sense of being in the here and now. A time when children can choose where they play, what interests they wish to pursue and where children can dress up and be whoever they want to be;
- Our pre-school program supports children as they become confident and involved learners, as well as effective communicators through the various experiences provided throughout our daily program.
In relation to Educators we believe:
- Educators play an important and profound role in children’s learning and acquisition of life skills;
- Educators must keep up to date with current research and practices;
- Educators must critically reflect upon their professional practices and evaluate their actions, in accordance with the EC Code of Ethics, the National Quality Standards and the Early Years Learning Framework.
Therefore we …
- Our early childhood professionals draw upon their skills, knowledge and expertise, when being intentional.
- Attend professional development training opportunities and read relevant journal articles associated with Early Childhood;
- Must be open to constructive feedback, support and guidance.
In relation to parents and families we believe:
- Parents, carers and families are a child’s first educators;
- Parents, carers and families choose our pre-school for the preparation for school that our daily program and routines provide;
- Parents, carers and families play a vital role in our service;
Therefore we ….
- Develop strong partnership with children’s parents, carers and families to establish individual goals for each child;
- Promote open communication, mutual respect and trust by engaging in conversations, sharing child portfolios, daily reflections and newsletters;
- Support families in the transition to school process;
- Encourage strong family involvement in our Management Committee, shared decision making and pre-school operation by inviting parents, carers and families to participate meaningfully in our service.
In relation to the wider community we believe:
- Our pre-school program and policies must reflect the expectations and diversity of the local community that utilise our service;
- Our pre-school must provide a sustainable and affordable early childhood service;
- We are strong advocates for inclusive education and are an important link to other early intervention services and referral agencies;
Therefore we …
- Will operate a service in accordance with guidelines set by the Education and Care Services National Regulations and other professional bodies;
- Will work collaboratively with children’s families, local schools and other related services to maintain meaningful partnerships;
- Share information with families in relation to other community services and events.