Education in the Hawkesbury: Learning through playtime at Vineyard Children's Early Learning Centre

HANDS on: At Vineyard Children's Early Learning Centre, youngsters can learn by participating in a range of experiences. Photos: Supplied

HANDS on: At Vineyard Children's Early Learning Centre, youngsters can learn by participating in a range of experiences. Photos: Supplied

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It is widely reported that Dr Karyn Purvis, internationally-renowned child development expert, author and advocate for children, once said: "Scientists have suggested that it takes approximately 400 repetitions to create a new synapse in the brain, unless it is done through play, in which case it takes between 10 and 20 repetitions."

Concepts are taught through play so that children are being exposed to real life scenarios, helping them to understand and engage in what they are learning.

The belief that play is an instrumental learning tool underlies Vineyard Children's Early Learning Centre's school readiness program which is built upon a play-based program.

The program has been designed by two university trained educators, who between them have more than three decades of experience in the industry.

It centres around the whole child and their particular needs, interests and ideas at various ages and stages of care.  

The centre's school readiness program begins in the nursery room and adapts as children move through the four rooms by catering to each child's particular age group - until they reach the year before school.

Concepts are taught through play so that children are being exposed to real life scenarios, helping them to understand and engage in what they are learning.

LEARN: Centring around the whole child, their particular needs, interests and ideas at various ages and stages of care, is the play-based school readiness program.

LEARN: Centring around the whole child, their particular needs, interests and ideas at various ages and stages of care, is the play-based school readiness program.

Children participate in experiences including art, literacy, maths and science through experiments, exploring mediums, engaging with print in their environment, phonics, interactive games and discussions, cooking and many more.

Educators are hands-on with teaching during experiences so they can engage children by asking questions, exploring ideas, counting, extending vocabulary and other concepts that extend way beyond worksheets and flashcards.

The aim of the play-based program is to help children understand what they are learning, rather than relying on the memory and repetition of rote learning. 

Even as adults, we understand ideas and concepts more when we are engaged and that is why at Vineyard Children's Early Learning Centre, they strive to ensure children's learning always has meaning. 

Editorial supplied by Vineyard Children's Early Learning Centre.