What should key elements of an ideal early childhood educational environment be?
Early childhood education is a branch of education theory that relates to the teaching of children from birth up to the age of eight. Traditionally, this is up to the equivalent of third grade. Wikipedia
- The learning environment is an important and powerful teaching tool.
- The environment communicates to children what is expected of them.
- Directs and supports pedagogy
- Learning environment is set up with the knowledge of how children learn and develop.
- It can positively support learning.
- Independence and joy of learning should be kept in mind while creating learning environment.
- Learning environment also communicates a sense of intuitionalism
- Learning environment can be a powerful tool for inclusion or exclusion
Key features of an ECE Environment:
- Learning corners
- Proper arrangement of lights
- Seating arrangement
- Learning material
- Placement and accessibility of material to children.
How the learning corners helps:
- Learning corners are ideal work spaces for children.
- It encourage children to learn in ways that are natural to them.
- It provides for a wide range of abilities and interests.
- Provides opportunities for group and individual activities
- Working in different corners helps children in developing children’s ability to:
- Take initiatives
- Complete self-chosen tasks
- Experiment and discover
- Make sense of the world around them
- Work independently, share and co-operate with others.
- Develop social skills
- Materials in learning centers are selected and arranged to foster involvement, independence, decision making, and responsibility.
- children are given extended opportunities
- All learning centers have a broad range of activities to accommodate child’s interest and level of development.
- Always model new activities.
- Define center boundaries with low shelves, carpet, or tape.
- Organize materials on low shelves close to their point of use so the materials in each center are always accessible to the students.
- Organize small items in labeled tubs or baskets for easy clean-up.
- Place pictures, words, or outlines of objects on shelves to assist students in putting materials away when an activity is completed.