Further to the Early Years Study by McCain and Mustard (1999), the Best Start program implemented the study’s main recommendation, known as the Early Learning Framework (ELF).
“Early Learning for Every Child Today is a guide to support curriculum and pedagogy in Ontario’s early childhood settings. It is a living document that will continue to evolve as early childhood practitioners working in early childhood settings use it.”
Early Learning for Every Child Today is a practical guide for practitioners based on the following six principles:
- Early child development sets the foundation for lifelong learning, behaviour and health.
- Partnerships with families and communities strengthen the ability of early childhood settings to meet the needs of young children.
- Respect for diversity, equity and inclusion are prerequisites for honouring children’s rights, optimal development and learning.
- A planned curriculum supports early learning.
- Play is a means to early learning that capitalizes on children’s natural curiosity and exuberance.
- Knowledgeable, responsive early childhood professionals are essential.
How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years
Following the implementation of the Early Learning Framework, the Ontario Ministry of Education produced another document entitled How Does Learning Happen? The pedagogical approach applied in our programs is based on this document. The four foundations of this new pedagogy are belonging, well-being, engagement and expression, allowing children to thrive as they grow. This vision confirms that children are competent, curious beings with interests, capable of learning regardless of age, ability, culture, language, geography or setting.
French is learned as a mother tongue or second language when a child comes in contact with educators and peers by participating in activities and routines experienced in French.