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Ontario English Catholic Teachers

Kindergarten

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Lifting Learning (OECTA)

OECTA has long championed full-day Kindergarten to build a solid foundation for every child. In the earliest days of Ministry of Education discussions, OECTA submitted position papers in support of the program for 4- and 5-year olds. With the program well underway across the province, OECTA has actively been engaged with program teachers and their ECE partners to identify and address issues. With Ministry support and funding we have produced new, leading edge resources with Kindergarten practitioners and world-recognized researchers.

Lifting Learning is intended to serve as an overall guide to implementing the Full-Day Early Learning Kindergarten Program document.

Videos

Lifting Learning: An Introduction

Kindergarten teacher Mary Day-Mauro and ECE Stephanie Pascarella share how they blended their individual skills and professional knowledge to develop co-operative teaching strategies.

They candidly talk about the rewards and challenges of maintaining a play-based, inquiry filled classroom that focuses on all dimensions of a child’s learning, both social-emotional and cognitive

Building a Team

The early learning Kindergarten team uses reflective practice, planned observation, and a range of assessment strategies to identify the strengths, needs and interests of individual children in order to provide instruction that is appropriate for each child – differentiated instruction. (ELKP 2010).

Co-Constructing Learning

How does the full-day program contribute to opportunities for co-constructing learning? What ways do you co-construct learning with the children in your class?

Fostering Self-Regulation

Intentional planning is an important component of the full-day program. How does an educator intentionally plan and allow for flexibility, without overly directing the learning?

Children who can self-regulate have an advantage for learning and working well with others. How can self-regulation be fostered in the classroom?

Learning Through Inquiry and Play

The learning activities are designed by the early learning Kindergarten team to encourage the children to think creatively, to explore and investigate, to solve problems and engage in the inquiry process, and to share their learning with others. (ELKP, 2010).

The above quotation is an accurate depiction of the ideal full-day Kindergarten classroom. If children are solving problems and engaging in the inquiry process, what would you hear, see and do as the classroom teacher or ECE in that room?

Learning Happens Everywhere

How can spaces, other than the classroom, be used as environments for learning? What advantage is there to using other spaces?

Observation and Documentation

Documentation provides an accurate and detailed record of the ongoing evidence of a child’s efforts and learning.

Team members’ observations are captured through notes, pictures, and videos and supplemented by the child’s own representations. (ELKP, 2010).

Final Thoughts

Mary Day-Mauro and Stephanie Pascarella summarize their thoughts on inquiry and play-based learning.

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