How does your day begin? What things do you do every day? What’s the most important part of your morning or evening? Why do we love the holidays and then after a while are delighted when school and work are back again? It’s often because routine is restored. Routines are an important part of all our lives, and sometimes we are not even aware of them until they are disrupted. They bring a rhythm and predictability to daily life.
For children, routines influence their intellectual and social development. They help young children feel secure, that life has some predictability and it helps them understand the expectations of their family, school and other elements of their world. It brings a sense of comfort and consistency.
The routines for children at the ELC have been created and developed over many years. They enable children in their group learning setting to gain independence, to develop their self-help skills and to support the development of meaningful connections with their community of other children and educators. In turn, this helps to extend their thinking and problem solving, provide opportunities for language development and knowing where to get different tools or articles in the playroom and outside.
In both families and the ELC, routines strengthen shared beliefs, values and interests. Routines are a significant part of daily living and learning. Young children are born to learn, they are wired to explore, and their learning occurs all day, continuously in every situation.
Encouraging the children to do their own jobs in the morning and at the end of day both at home and at the Centre is part of this routine and ritual. Packing up together, and setting the table for lunch, organising the shoes in pairs all supports children’s mathematical thinking and their connection to their peers.
Routines are a natural part of the learning environment and we also encourage you to reflect on your own routines at home.
Director of ELC Kew
Photo: ELC students learning chemistry with Year 8