The period from birth to 8 years is a time of remarkable growth with brain development at its peak. During this time, children are highly influenced by the environment and the people around them. It is a time of holistic development of a child’s social, emotional, cognitive and physical needs in order to build a solid and broad foundation for lifelong learning and wellbeing (UNESCO, 2016).
St James’ is committed to ensuring students transitioning to Kindergarten receive the best possible start to their schooling. Our dedicated Kindergarten teachers and Learning Support Team visit our Early Learning centres to gain as much information as possible about the students coming into our care. Our transition and orientation programs are family-friendly and designed to promote relationships between staff and students. We pride ourselves on providing a multitude of opportunities for new students to feel comfortable in the formal school setting in the year before they start school.
The Diocesan Early Learning Policy is firmly founded on Six Declarations about the Early Learner in Catholic schools. It is centred on the image of the child and underpins all we do here at St James’.
The use of these Declarations, through play-based learning, builds the firm foundation of delivery of the curriculum in the early years here at St James’. We endeavour to:
- Deliver through literacy and numeracy development because these are the foundations on which further learning is built
- Deliver through motor skills development, physical activity and the development of safe and healthy personal practices
- Priority is given to the holistic wellbeing of the child, including social and emotional learning as well as early intervention and support.
All children in the early years will have the opportunity to develop their sensory, cognitive and affective appreciation of the world around them through exploratory and creative learning in the arts and technology.