Early childhood is a very important phase in the education of your child. It is during this time that many of the fundamental ideas and approaches to learning are established. You may be concerned about what your child will learn when they attend a school or learning centre. It is not only what is taught to the children that is important, though, but also the structure, organization and atmosphere of the whole learning environment.
What constitutes the learning environment
The environment in which a young child will learn includes the classroom as well as the playground. Learning of different kinds takes place in both spaces:
In the classroom, children are introduced to different elements with which they interact and learning takes place.
In the playground, the children play on the equipment, learning to negotiate obstacles and different spaces. They learn a whole range of different types of lessons from what they learn in the classroom.
The classroom should be well-prepared
The way a classroom is arranged and equipped will have an influence on the children and the teacher and therefore on the learning that takes place. The space must be organized so that there are a number of areas where children can play with, and learn from, different items. They should have an open pathway to the different activities. In a system that is different from mainstream education, such as the Montessori approach, the preparation of the learning environment is paramount.
Any learning environment must be carefully arranged
When teachers plan how to set out the classroom, they should consider how children learn. In the Montessori system, the focus is on the children learning at their own pace, so there should be spaces and resources in the learning area to which the children's attention can be directed as their attention shifts. In a more traditional classroom, the arrangement of the space should be orderly and disciplined, so that the learners may be guided in their learning in an orderly manner.
The atmosphere in the learning environment must be constructive
The atmosphere in the classroom and the playground in an early childhood education centre needs to be accepting. It should inspire trust between teachers and learners. Whether in mainstream schooling, or alternative systems, it is fundamental that each child be acknowledged and accepted as an individual. The teacher should respect each child, which will help the children trust both the teacher and the learning environment.
For more information, contact companies like Hopskotch Kindergarten.