Learning in play is nurtured when early childhood educators are:
♣ Actively engaged in play
♣ Offering choices
♣ Responsive to children’s interests
♣ Supporting the repeated practice of learning skills
♣ Providing an environment that promotes the elaboration of those skills
Definition of Emergent Curriculum
The emergent curriculum provides a framework for a child-centered and play-based curriculum that ensures learning opportunities for all children including environments suitable for:
♣ a variety of play levels
♣ indoor and outdoor experiences
♣ quiet play and active play
♣ group play and opportunities to be practice
♣ Routines, transitions, and schedules where free play provides space for children’s choices
In an emergent curriculum framework, children, parents, and ECEs have a say in decision-making. ECEs emphasize plans that evolve from the daily life of children and adults in early childhood settings, NOT ‘pre-set.
Early childhood educators:
♣ begin with observation of children’s play themes, learning, and the developmental skills that children are practicing
♣ provide the environment that sustains children’s play themes with opportunities to develop emerging skills
♣ extend play and learning with achievable challenges, skill mastery, and increased complexity
♣ ensure that while children play, they have opportunities to showcase what they know in play
♣ document learning and plan to respond to children’s development, play needs, and interests, with a curriculum that sustains and extends learning.
Emergent Curriculum in Practice
♣ The environment is designed with a rich variety of materials that enable children to enter at their level and discover what interests them
♣ The early childhood educator makes plans that are open-ended, flexible, and responsive to children, and documents records of children’s play, meaning-making, and learning.
Both adults and children are decision-makers in the content and direction of the curriculum. Plans remain open to change and new directions that may not have been part of the initial plan.
ECEs are part of a planning team. They use the Continuum of development to identify learning skills. And use a planning format to document learning and communicate curriculum with
Discussion of skills is essential, ensuring that the ECEs support the development of learning skills with the teaching category. In this way learning and development command meaningful content.
The planning demonstrates the richness and diversity of children’s play, interests, and skills.
What are some of the “new directions” discussed by the Educators at the planning meeting?
Experiences in each curriculum
Planning starts with a discussion about the previous week’s play and Interpretation involves reviewing the skills, learning, and the meaning it had for children. Identify some of the skills involved:
Art media exploration skills
Sustaining (Emergent Curriculum in Practice)
The emergent curriculum includes connections to the expectation from one area to another and one day to the next.
Creative ECEs provide a variety of opportunities and an environment for children to learn
Describe how the learning skills involved with drumming were sustained in the curriculum:
Drumming called for observation and involvement of learners through play through either dances or drum beating. Dancing and drum beating was sustained by enabling the participation in a conducive space and the use of functional drums that necessitated learners’ involvement. Also, recording the progress through videos offered a platform for future memory and a guide for the teachers who could point to weaker areas and correct the participants. Observation of the activities during drumming was sustained through notes taking for references.
Planning for Extending (Emergent Curriculum in Practice)
Curriculum content is planned with children in play. Because children’s interests may take a new direction as curriculum evolves, planning must prepare for and respond to what emerges from children’s play
Curriculum development involves continuous observation, planning, evaluation, and adaptation to streamline learning. In weekly planning meetings, ECEs discuss individuals’ learning and development.
They look back over the last week and plan what can come next –doc how learning has been sustained and make plans for curriculum extensions that provide: achievable challenges, skill mastery, and increased complexity taking learning to the next level. Emergent curriculum extends learning when ECE use strategies to challenge thinking and promote problem solving.
How have the Educators provided experiences to challenge children’s thinking and promote problem solving? List three examples and describe how.
- Asking questions that provoke their ability to solve-problems
- Encouraging pear participation that boosts their confidence in problem-solving
- They offer experiences to the learners that boost their involvements in problem-solving
Provide Three examples and describe how the families and communities were involved in the curriculum experiences explained in the video?
- Frequent communications with children and teachers about the progress
- Acting as volunteers in some cases to encourage learners and support institutions
- Attending institutional conference convened to deliberate on learners’ initiative-based curriculum
Opportunities for Representation
Representation is an internal process in which children create mental pictures to stand for actual objects, people, and events. Emergent curriculum includes opportunities for representation embedded in visualization. Experience and knowledge are clarified, integrated, and reflected. Representation enables the child to understand a different time and place where the child has never been. It allows the child to turn back to experience, reflect and re-represent it on another level. Through representation, learning can grow from personal points of view to learning of others.
Opportunities for Documentation
A record of children’s learning and play and the meaning it had for them. ECEs document children’s learning.
Emergent curriculum provides a framework for play that ensures plans are made for children development, learning and interests.
Benefits: provides support for development, learning and the elaboration of learning over time; Is flexible ECEs plan emergent curriculum that includes families and communities. Emergent Curriculum supports who children are and who they are becoming