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POLICY on curriculum and assessment

Rationale

All children will be given the opportunity to develop knowledge, skills and attitudes to enable them to grow up as competent and confident learners and communicators.

Purpose

To ensure formal and informal opportunities are provided for teachers to notice, recognise and respond to individuals and groups of children, and for parents & whãnau to have authentic and meaningful opportunities to contribute to this process.

Procedures

Curriculum and assessment practices encompass the learning and development of the whole child. Learning experiences are based on wellbeing (care rituals), language and communication, relationships, exploration and home and community.

  1. We actively use the Principles, Goals and Strands of Te Whãriki to guide our teaching and planning processes.
  2. Our teaching methods are consistent with current theory and knowledge of best practice.
  3. Teacher interactions are positive, responsive and reciprocal.
  4. Children learn through play. Teachers observe children and create relationships and an environment that provides opportunities for children to learn appropriate skills, dispositions, and knowledge.
  5. The teachers set a learning pathway for the children in consultation with children and their parents. These are recorded in the children’s portfolios. Teachers use observations and discussions to assess progress and ensure their intentional teaching offers opportunities for further growth and development.
  6. We provide professional learning opportunities, paid staff meeting and paid planning time to ensure teachers’ knowledge, skills and actions are current and appropriate.
  7. Planning meetings provide opportunities for teachers to engage in collegial dialogue in relation to what they are noticing about children’s learning. Also, to discuss specific teaching strategies to add value to children’s learning. Meetings also provide opportunities to evaluate planning and identify learning outcomes for children.
  8. Teacher and Centre self-review are an integral part of our assessment, planning and evaluation processes.
  9. We document children’s learning on Storypark and in their portfolios using photos, observations and artwork. These are shared with parents and displayed on Planning Walls.
  10. We work in partnership with parents/caregivers and their input and feedback is encouraged and included in the planning and assessment for the children.
  11. Teachers use signs, gestures, open questions and feedback to encourage children to use language (verbal & non-verbal) to share their knowledge, express emotions and interact socially. Waiata, action songs and dancing, reading books and wall charts are an integral part of creating a language rich environment. Staff write in front of children and encourage interest in writing and reading in older children.
  12. Staff encourage older children to make decisions about their learning experiences by asking children what they are interested in, what they want to do and building this into daily activities.
  13. Children’s days are planned to have both outdoor and indoor play, and quiet and noisy times. Stages of development are acknowledged and the preference to play alone, alongside or with others is respected.
  14. The environment is set up to provide opportunity to extend the children’s specific learning needs.
  15. Teachers encourage children to revisit their learning by referring back to it in their portfolios and ensuring that their newly acquired skills are embedded into the children’s learning.
  16. Our teaching and learning programme values and respects the culture and background of the children attending our Centre. When children’s culture is valued, their sense of wellbeing and belonging is enhanced.