View Of The Child
“Children are competent, capable of complex thinking, curious and rich in potential” (HDLH, 2014, p.4).
We are dedicated to providing opportunities for children, regardless of their age, ability, culture, language, geography or setting, with integrated opportunities for growth, learning, health and well-being (HDLH, 2014, p.7). This can be found in all aspects of our program
including policies and procedures, the environment, planned experiences and interactions. All of these aspects of our program are organized around the Ministry of Education’s four foundations that are: well-being, belonging, engagement and expression, and are important for children to grow and flourish (HDLH, 2014, p.7; 13). “We view the children as competent and equal contributors to the Centre’s community and learning environment, with the unique perspectives, attitudes, approaches, dispositions, strength and needs, spirit and character” (HDLH, P.18). This is supported with valuable input from the children and families as well as the involvement of the children in the process of planning, supporting them to be full participants of the program.
As the Ministry document ‘How Does Learning Happen?’ highlights, “during the first years of life, the brain develops at an astonishing rate and is not just a process of genetics…but is dramatically influenced by our early experiences with people and our surroundings” (2014, p.4). We know that children develop through environments where adults provoke learning through their intentional and meaningful interactions, and also know when to step back and let the children lead. We value the fact that children are influenced by multiple factors such as the family, social and cultural contexts in which they live and play, as well as their own unique perspectives and their life experiences (HDLH, p.17-18). It is of the utmost importance to consider children’s mental health and well-being for a practice that supports resiliency and focuses on children’s strengths to support mastery in other areas of development.