|Faculty or Section :||Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts|
|School or Department :||School of Education|
|Student contribution band :||Band 1|
|Grading basis :||Graded|
|Version produced :||16 May 2022|
Pre-requisite: Students must be enrolled in one of the following Programs: BEED or BEDU (Early Childhood) or BECH
Understanding the ways in which educational and social contexts influence children’s involvement and development as learners is critical to the pedagogy and practice of early educators. A critical role of early childhood educators involves research, observation and documentation in order to support children’s learning and to inform curricular and pedagogic planning. Early childhood educators typically draw upon a range of pedagogical documentation and data to gain insight on how a child thinks, what a child’s interests are, what their abilities are, and how they connect reciprocally with others and their environment. Observational, analytical and reporting skills, together with the interpretation of data, are foundational to quality educational practice, enabling educators to identify potential barriers and challenges to children’s learning and involvement, to plan appropriately challenging learning opportunities, and to report effectively on children’s learning progress.
This course draws on sociocultural theories, social justice frameworks and anti-bias approaches that consider children's development as learners as being shaped by a range of historical, cultural and social contexts within and beyond early education and care settings. The course gives particular emphasis to factors within educational contexts - outdoor and indoor learning environments, playgrounds, peer and pedagogic relationships - and how these contribute to children's access, involvement, engagement and development as learners. Social, relational and contextual factors that support children's full involvement and learning will be considered. Focus will be given to the role of educators in accurately identifying and managing any possible challenges, in order to ensure that all facets of children's educational experiences contribute to positive learning and development. Pre-service educators will learn how to interpret data, as well as learning skills of observation, analysis and reporting as the basis for communicating with parents pertaining to their child's educational experience. They will be introduced to a cycle of professional inquiry and develop knowledge and a rationale for gathering accurate information on and with children, which is the foundation for planning and organising appropriate learning opportunities for learners and for teachers' own professional learning needs.