OUR PROGRAM STATEMENT

Caledon East Children's Place follows the “Ontario Pedagogy for the Early Years, How Does Learning Happen?” and aligns it with elements of the “HighScope Educational Approach to Learning. The goals set for children are consistent with the Four Foundations of Learning. These include:

  1. BELONGING: Cultivating authentic relationships and connections

  2. WELL BEING: Nurturing healthy development and well being

  3. ENGAGEMENT: Creating contexts for learning through exploration, play and inquiry

  4. EXPRESSION: Fostering communication and expression in all forms

HighScope has goals and objectives and uses Key Development Indicators (KDIs) as the basis of their curriculum. KDIs are learning objectives which cover all domains of child development. (www.highscope.org)

 

Values

  • Caledon East Children’s Place (CECP) is committed to ensuring that all children have the right to be cared for in an environment where their social, emotional, physical and cognitive needs are supported.

  • Caledon East Children’s Place supports inclusion to include, but not limited to; age, education, ethnicity, gender, geographic location, income, language, marital status, occupation, parental status, physical and mental ability, race, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, cultural practices, family composition, appearance, diverse abilities and lifestyle. CECP welcomes and is inclusive of all children and families. CECP believes children have the right to be cared for in an environment located in their own community where they will grow, develop and learn. CECP promotes a sense of belonging, well-being, engagement, and expression. CECP welcomes and participates fully with others who have unique goals and abilities.

  • Practices, emphasizes and promotes active learning through play, which means children have direct, hands-on experiences with people, objects, events, and ideas.

  • Every child is valued as an individual and connected to others in our environment. They form authentic caring relationships with others, contribute and create a sense of Belonging with their peers, their group, their classroom community and their world.   

  • Every Child is nurtured and supported to promote positive well-being, healthy development and a positive sense of self.

  • Every child is an active participant in their environment. They are co-constructors of their world. Children are active learners that engage as they plan, play, inquire and recount their experiences. They problem solve, think creatively and express ideas which is essential to their success and development.

  • Every child is recognized as capable, competent, curious and rich in potential. Children are encouraged to express themselves physically, verbally, or through the use of different materials. This promotes positive communication; language skills and a strong sense of self where they can be become equal partners and develop problem solving skills. Each child is valued as an individual.   

Educators:

  • Observe and document children's interests and plan experiences to enhance learning and understanding of each child's level of development, plan a variety of individual and group, indoor and outdoor activities to support and extend children's learning

  • Participate in children’s play, converse as a play partner with children, use encouragement instead of praise, encourage children to problem solve using the “6 Steps to Problem Solving” approach as set out by HighScope.

  • Engage with, and value families and community members as the most important contributors to their child’s learning experience. Children’s social interactions with their peers are encouraged and supported each day as they explore materials.

  • recognize and support the uniqueness in each child, engage with the children as co-learners during their exploration of the environment, provoke their curiosity and guide positive interactions, engage in a positive approach to support children's emotions

  •  regularly reflect on practices as they engage in new learning experiences, both individually and with colleagues

  • Attend and are committed to professional learning. CECP participates in the “Raising the Bar”. This is a quality initiative designed to enhance quality care in childcare and early years programs.

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Belonging

The Learning Environment

Staff plan for and create a positive learning environment in which each child’s learning and development is supported. Indoor, outdoor, active play and rest/quiet time are incorporated into the day.  The unique needs of each individual child is considered.

 

The programs encompass, promote and support inquiry, communication, active participation, and meaningful experiences for children. Children formulate new ideas about their world and focus on activities that interest them. The Learning environment supports experiences and provides opportunities for child initiated and teacher supported experiences and interactions. Curriculum content areas include:

  • Language, literacy and communication

  • Creative arts, music and movement, pretend play

  • Mathematics, construction and design

  • Science, technology and social studies

  • Active outdoor play that supports physical literacy/development and health

  • Approaches to Learning; planning, engagement and reflection

  • Social and Emotional Development; promoting positive self-identity and self-regulation skills, sense of competence and building relationships with others.

 

 

Teacher-Child Interactions and Experiences:

  • Providing for child initiated and adult supported experiences

  • Support positive and responsive interactions among the children, parents, educators and staff

A major component of the program at CECP, is teacher-child interaction and the importance of how “shared control” is essential to how teachers and children interact. Teachers and children are play partners which allows for a supportive environment. Activities are planned by teachers and are focused on specific concepts that are based on the child’s interests, development and goals for learning. Teachers observe each child in their group and provide opportunities for children to express their initiatives and make choices. During play situations, teachers follow children's leads. They also look for opportunities to gradually challenge the children by introducing new ideas or concepts, while remaining within the goals set out for them.

 

The centre values and fosters collaborative and cooperative relationships with all our community partners. Partnerships include but are not limited to: The Region of Peel, PIRS, local community colleges and universities, local schools in the community, community leaders and councilors, Community of Caledon East local businesses and organizational groups. Events, funding and support programs hosted by our centre for our families are generously supported by these partners in one way or another and are in full support of the centers’ well-being, viability and sustainability.

 

Well-being

The Centre promotes the health, safety, nutrition and well-being of children, educators and families.

Caledon East Children’s Place meets all the requirements under health and safety mandated by the Ministry of Education, Public health and other municipal by-laws. Policies, procedures and protocols are in place to protect and enforce proper safety practices, promote good health and proper sanitation. Our kitchen staff is “Food Handler” certified and follows a strict regimen when preparing and serving food as well as keeping a clean and sanitary environment.

The centre takes stringent steps to protect children with food allergies. Child allergies are documented and the menu is adjusted to ensure that all children, regardless of the allergy, are included. We make special provisions for children with Anaphylaxis and have a strict policy in regards to NO food being brought in to the centre, which is monitored very closely by the Supervisor and kitchen staff.

All Staff, volunteers and students must have current First Aid and CPR. All new employees, volunteers and students must obtain a Criminal Reference Check (Vulnerable Sector Screen) before commencing employment, student placement or volunteer time at the centre.

​Documentation

Influenced by HighScope principles, the educators document daily experiences, interactions, work samples and photographs to determine a child’s interest, progress and development. The teacher then coordinates the reflective documentation and measures how the program contributes to the children's growth. The teacher then creates the following day’s plans to enhance and move forward with supporting the child’s strengths, goals and interests.

These authentic assessments are more natural. They provide teachers with valuable and practical information to understand and plan for the developmental needs of the children in their care. Because information on children's progress is gathered in the course of everyday classroom activities, the results can immediately be put to work to strengthen the classroom program (HighScope: Child Assessment, 2016).

Engagment

Fostering Children’s exploration, play and Inquiry

  • Through daily observations of children during work and choice time, daily routines and outdoor time, teachers take note of what the children say and do. The teachers use this information to plan small and large group times, outdoor experiences and for the addition of materials that scaffold children’s learning.

  • During the children’s work or choice time, teachers sit with the children and observe their play to see what direction the children are taking. Teachers use the children’s lead and ideas to take on a role in their play – they do not force their ideas on the children. Teachers recognize that play is more purposeful and lasts longer when the children arrive at, and execute their personal and group ideas for play.

  • Observation and note taking provide teachers with information on the children’s current skills and abilities. Using this information, teachers arrive at ideas on how to expand/scaffold this learning through adding materials and by providing appropriate questions.

  • Fostering ongoing communication with parents about the program and their children.

  • Educators use pictures and notes for daily communication records on eating/toileting/activities for children in the toddler groups. Typically, at pick up time, teachers provide parents with information about some components of their child’s day. Parents are highly encouraged to call the centre to speak with staff at any time. Many parents call the centre through times of new adjustment, and are provided with specific examples of their children’s day.

Expression

We believe children have the ability to express themselves, have their own thoughts and can problem solve through different challenges. The HighScope “Six Step in Resolving Conflict” enables educators to support and guide children through the steps to conflict resolution and empower their own feelings, thought and expressions.

Conflict Resolution – The Problem-Solving Method (www.highscope.org).

  1. Approach calmly, stopping any hurtful actions. Place yourself between the children, on their level; use a calm voice and gentle touch; remain neutral rather than take sides.

  2. Acknowledge children's feelings. Say something simple such as “You look really upset;” let children know you need to hold any object in question.

  3. Gather information. Ask “What is the problem?” Do not ask “why” questions as young children focus on what the problem is rather than understanding the reasons behind it.

  4. Restate the problem: “So the problem is...” Use and extend the children’s vocabulary, substituting neutral words for hurtful or judgmental ones.

  5. Ask for solutions and choose one together. Ask “What can we do to solve this problem?” Encourage children to think of a solution but offer options if the children are unable to at first.

  6. Educators prepare to give follow-up support. Acknowledge children’s accomplishments, e.g., “You solved the problem!” Stay nearby in case anyone is not happy with the solution and the process needs repeating.

 

Encourage children to interact and communicate in a positive way and support their ability to self-regulate

The centre recognizes the importance of positive interactions between teachers and children. Children who experience difficulty with transitions or stressful situations (such as drop off time) are supported and given opportunities to de-stress and recover from those situations.  This allows for a more positive outcome. Educators are caring, warm, responsive and inclusive and promote positive relationships with children in their care. They collaborate with children and families to provide the best possible care using supportive strategies. Teachers also share their professional knowledge and experiences in order to reflect and support children and their families. Supporting children with the ability to self-regulate is one of the Centre’s most important practices.

Educators

  • Provide an environment for children to self-regulate

  • Provide items of comfort and time to destress and recover

  • Recognize triggers for individual children. This allows the educators to prepare children before these occur.

  • Use SOUL: Silence, observation, understanding, listening