Category Archives: Early years of school

Mud play—yes please

As more and more early childhood services understand the need for young children to engage with nature and natural environments, many services are introducing ‘mud play’ to their curriculum. We only need to watch children after a heavy shower of rain to see their delight in the puddle on the grass where ‘mud making’ often […]

Not waving, drowning

Drowning is almost always a deceptively quiet event. The waving, splashing, and yelling that dramatic conditioning (television and cinema) prepares us to look for, is rarely seen in real life. This blog explains why those nearby often miss vital signs that a child or adult is drowning within reach. Read on for more information on Royal […]

Never been a better time to Be You

More than a million children attend one of Australia’s 15 500 early education services every year. They deserve responsive, skilled guidance through those critical early years and especially as difficulties or vulnerabilities emerge. One in five children enters school with at least one developmental vulnerability (AEDC, n.d.). Knowing that one in seven children between the […]

The time for first steps is over: Doing better for all young children

‘Children have taught me the most important lessons about advocacy’ says DR CINDY BLACKSTOCK. They are ‘experts in love and fairness’ yet ‘we often view children in ways that reduce their dignity and development’. Dr Blackstock, an international keynote speaker at the 2018 ECA National Conference in Sydney (19–22 September), spoke with ECA about moral courage and […]

‘You have to look after yourself’: ECEC educators and resilience

Wellbeing and resilience are hot topics for young children and early learning. New research turns the lens on early childhood educators and their settings. A workshop at ECA’s 2018 National Conference will present findings on the implications of this research for educator resilience and team practices. In the meantime academic and researcher, MADELEINE  DOBSON, provides […]

Families are where learning begins

Families are where learning begins. Babies and young children are naturally curious, responsive and eager to explore their surroundings. Families—in all their glorious diversity and ‘not quite perfection’—are where the young child starts this journey, a lifelong path outwards from self, towards mastery and understanding. First conversations and relationships, creativity, capacity to express joy, kindness, […]

When allergy awareness gets personal

There’s always more to learn as Dr Kate Highfield found out with a young baby showing signs that allergies or intolerances to food needed investigation and greater understanding.  It is Food Allergy Week (13–19 May) this week, and this year’s theme calls for Australians to ‘Be aware and show you care’. For me, after years as […]

The Gonski report—implications for early years teaching

Last week, the Federal Government released the Gonski Panel’s Through Growth to Achievement: Report of the Review to Achieve Educational Excellence in Australian Schools. Well received by many in the education sector, some of the findings and recommendations are highly relevant to early childhood education. The government’s agenda on education has been clear for some […]

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