EARLY-LEARNING

Welcome to Buddhi Early Years Learning

Also called Buddhi Kindyland, our Early Years program is an exclusive facility for young children where active learning is keenly encouraged. We do this through a blend of progressive early childhood education practices from the best around the world. We value individual differences and believe in the philosophy of “learn while you play and play while you learn” education.

We understand that children learn best through play experiences.  They build their knowledge and skills through active learning. Our child-centered curriculum encourages choice, learning autonomy and socio-emotional well being. We also believe that learning is an ongoing, evolving process – an individual continuum of acquired competencies and this reflects in our program, which follows an emergent curricular approach without any prescribed content or a predicted timeline. Learning here, emphasises creativity and verbal expression through the arts & language as well as encourages the wonder of discovery and inquiry through active exploration.

We believe that children learn best

  • by exploring their environment through hands-on and real life activities.
  • through long blocks of uninterrupted play.
  • with opportunities to explore both outdoors and indoors.
  • with a caring, respectful relationship with peers and adults.
  • in an atmosphere, which celebrates the joys of everyday life.
  • when they all feel equally valued and supported.

The Buddhi early learning environment therefore has been designed to allow for such a holistic development in our children.

We endeavour therefore to provide and sustain an environment that allows for such a holistic development in our children.

How our program is implemented

The Buddhi Kindyland early learning curriculum is guided by the Te Whariki model for learning, which is New Zealand’s national early childhood curricular framework, and prioritises the development of a child’s learning dispositions and working theories.

Learning dispositions necessarily incorporate a ‘ready, willing and able’ element. Being ‘ready’ means having the inclination, being ‘willing’ means having sensitivity to time and place, and being ‘able’ means having the necessary knowledge and skills. Learning dispositions enable children to construct learner identities that travel with them into new contexts and across time, in this way supporting lifelong learning.

Working theories are the evolving ideas and understandings that children develop as they use their existing knowledge to try to make sense of new experiences. Children are most likely to generate and refine working theories in learning environments where uncertainty is valued, inquiry is modelled, and making meaning is the goal.

Learning dispositions and working theories are closely interwoven. For example, the disposition to be curious involves having the inclination and skills to inquire into and puzzle over ideas and events. These inquiries will often lead to the development of working theories.

Our program therefore is carefully crafted to allow for these two facets of learning and our goal is

  • To provide an environment which, promotes active play and social interaction, around a supportive teaching environment.
  • To provide learning opportunities which are sensory, real and child-directed.
  • To create an environment that promotes learning thru’ exploration, discovery, curiosity and creative & problem thinking, while encouraging autonomy of learning.
  • To foster individuality in children through caring relationships with teachers who express respect for all children and celebrate their individual differences.

Play is the means through which our children learn and forms the foundation of learning in our early learning environment. Our play based approach includes both child initiated and teacher supported activities. Our teachers encourage children to participate in authentic experiences and extend children’s interests and knowledge through engaging interactions.

Learning is discovery oriented in our early learning program, where young children naturally engage in exploring their environment through unrestricted play by themselves and with others. In so exploring their environment they “discover” things and thereby make sense of their world. It’s as simple as that! This kind of learning is never routine. It involves open ended problems and new situations. It provides children with challenge and the opportunity to understand their environment and build their own body of knowledge as opposed to being presented the facts. It almost always involves curiosity and exploration, and therefore provides opportunity for creativity. It helps build camaraderie as children have real opportunities to socialise and build friendships through play.

Projects are another important aspect of the Buddhi early learning model and provide a great opportunity for older children as they progress to collaborative learning. Being emergent in nature, projects ‘emerge’ out of children’s interests and time spent with their teachers and friends in activities jointly done. For example, they may watch or work together with a teacher who is sewing, cooking, gardening or creating art. Or, they may decide to embark on a goal while playing among themselves. Projects may therefore take days or weeks to complete to each child’s satisfaction. This approach promotes autonomy by allowing children the time and space to take charge of their learning as they set the context themselves. They also have the freedom to collaborate with their friends, or work individually, all of which lays the foundation for meaningful and independent learning.

Learning is also inquiry focused, which enables our teachers to bring topical connections to learning.  By following their own curiosity and answering questions that emerge during their play or activities children build acquire new knowledge and skills (working theories) in authentic and meaningful ways.

Our approach allows children to remain engaged and individually focused thereby enabling our teachers to create learning moments based around this kind of authentic learning, which are then depicted as interesting learning stories.

Children also have plenty of opportunities to come together daily as a group to participate in discussions, story & read aloud sessions, music and movement activities, games and meal times. Discussions help children develop communication and social confidence. Listening to stories widens their imagination, helping them cross cultural boundaries, learn about others’ experiences and connect those with their own feelings. Reading aloud introduces children to literacy and print. Music and movement allows children to explore their bodies in a different ways and promotes a sense of rhythm, harmony and melody. Games brings children together where they learn to participate in organised leisure, begin to play by rules and learn to take risks and make decisions for themselves.

Transitions are very important at Buddhi Kindyland and our teachers support children in various ways as they move from home to our early learning setting. We know that very often a child needs to start at the centre with someone they trust (their parent or caregiver) and then build up from short visits to longer visits, in order to gain the trust and confidence to participate independently. Beginning in this positive way creates a happy and settled space for learning. It naturally follows therefore that one of the most important aspects of our learning culture is the teacher-child relationship and this forms the centre of the learning experience for our young children. Every child sees the teacher as both their buddy and parent-at-school. Such relationships further extend to homes and our teachers are there to help families throughout their child’s learning journey.