The Planning Cycle Explained
Collecting my information, I watched the video taken at St. James Parish School two times. The first time I watched the video as a whole group and observed, the second time I watched the video, I chose a child who was female with blond hair and wrote a learning story and time sample. This allowed me to observe her interests and develop skills. I used a time sample to document her movements and an antidotal record.
Analyzing the information, I was able to identify outcomes from EYLF, I was able to see what the child has learned and their weakness and strength in their development. For example, I found the child’s strength was she used imagination and was able to role-play during all three different scenarios. Analyzing the observations, I found the child had an interest in food and cooking. Therefore, I create a plan to do a cooking activity to continue their learning and bring their imagination to life by making a cake.
My strategies would be intentional teaching and play-based learning by looking into a new area to challenge the child through their interest. The selection of these approaches is conditional upon their suitability for the purposes of enhancing the understanding of students through play and developing problem-solving skills (Edwards, 2017). I will introduce mathematics with measuring cups using the words half, whole, full, 1 cup, 2 tsp, etc. I will also extend social skills by allowing the children to work as a group to make decisions about what will be put in the cake, such as bananas, blueberries, etc., and take turns placing ingredients and stirring.
During the experience, I will continue to observe and document by taking photos or filming. I will then analyze and self-assess by encouraging the child to talk about their interest and learnings in the experience; I will self-assess how I could make the experience better and, what the children take away from this experience, and how I will follow through with the next experience.
The Concept Formation Model by McLachlan, Fleer, and Edwards
The concept formation model presented by McLachlan, Fleer, and Edwards in 2018 is based on the assumption that play is the main factor affecting learning outcomes. Hence, this framework incorporates this aspect as a mediator for creating a link between children’s imagination and real-life situations (McLachlan, Fleer, and Edwards, 2018). In other words, the knowledge is acquired through understanding abstract notions and projecting them onto the existing concepts.
My Concept Formation Model
The developed concept formation model is based on the need to underpin the theoretical knowledge with the practical experience of the learners. This diagram is supported by the intention of educators to use imagination and play to facilitate the acquisition of knowledge (see Figure 1). This objective corresponds to the previous observations of the girl saying that she was making a cake while using a bowl and a spoon with sand. In this way, the notions of the product she was attempting to create, alongside the desire to communicate with others in the process, determined the feasibility of the suggestions. This decision corresponds to the necessity to enhance student interactions while respecting their interests, as follows from the guide describing the characteristics of quality educational programs (Community Child Care, 2016). Thus, the lesson’s introduction implying making a real cake is reasonable for adhering to these principles.
The model diagram presented above includes the academic concepts promoted through the implementation of the designed plan. They are the ability to distinguish between a whole and a half bowl when following the recipe and comparing the objects’ sizes (see Figure 1). These skills can be successfully developed due to the fact that they are familiar with the environment, can clearly imagine the process of making a cake, and can be provided with the necessary equipment (The Department of Education and Training, 2017).
What is more important, the program reflects “everyday experiences” and, therefore, can be useful for applying the knowledge in reality (The Department of Education and Training, 2017, p. 14). The mediating role of teachers, it is reflected by their significance in both guiding the children and facilitating communication among them (see Figure 1). It means that they should involve all participants in the lesson while emphasizing the need for them to cooperate for better outcomes. As a result, the effectiveness of this initiative is to be higher, and numeracy and science as the key aspects will be addressed.
Description of the ‘Everyday Play’ and Mediation
The observed everyday play, which lay in the basis of the lesson presented above, is the experience of children. More specifically, one of the girls imagining actions that can be performed with a bowl and a spoon wanted to make a cake in the sandpit and talked to others about the idea. Hence, pedagogical thinking was reflected in the behavioral aspect, whereas the context increased the understanding (Hydon, 2018). The fact that it was not supported by all students contributes to the necessity to combine efforts in learning the process to ensure uniform outcomes.
In conclusion, the conducted assessment showed that ensuring the proper communication patterns appropriate for the selected context is critical for everyone’s understanding. In this situation, the idea to make a cake emerged after the observations of one of the students imagining the process. In turn, the emphasis on the necessity to develop social skills was determined by the girl’s desire to discuss the project with others.
For both tasks, the provision of materials for teaching practice is required; otherwise, the connection between play and reality cannot be efficiently established. Also, performing the assignment increased my knowledge concerning the way academic or formal concepts can be explained on the grounds of similar lessons. They allow teaching children in the areas of numeracy and science while ensuring that the process is entertaining. Moreover, these aspects effectively complement the previously mentioned communicative needs as they help maintain equality in the learners’ outcomes which can be used for finding common ground in discussing matters.
In addition, particular strengths can be relied on when teaching the lesson. They include the focus on creativity for independent and collective decision-making, empathy towards one another when interacting, and collaboration of individuals for boosting their progress. Meanwhile, some areas can be improved, and they are connected to the assessment procedure and intentional teaching.
For the former task, the use of open-ended questions should be readjusted with regard to the process of making a cake instead of adopting a generalized approach (Neaum, 2016). As for the latter, the changes should be related to the creation of the same setting for all students for “shared thinking and problem-solving” (Edwards, 2017, p. 4). Thus, the results will be more positive when these ideas are incorporated into the practice. Learning outcomes will correspond to the intention of educators to address the needs of all students while highlighting the importance of their cooperation.
Community Child Care (2016) Planning a quality educational program. Web.
Hydon, C. (2018) An ongoing cycle: The importance of planning for children’s learning and development. Web.
Edwards, S. (2017) ‘Play-based learning and intentional teaching: Forever different?’, Australasian Journal of Early Childhood, 42(2), pp. 4-11. Web.
McLachlan, C., Fleer, M. and Edwards, S. (2018) Early childhood curriculum: Planning, assessment, and implementation. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Neaum, S. (2016) Child development for early years students and practitioners. London: Sage.
The Department of Education and Training (2017) Practice principle guide: Assessment for learning and development. Web.