Up to 90% of brain development occurs in the first five years of life. Early learning matters, and creates a solid foundation for future development.
Philosophical underpinnings in early education matter too. They influence the interactions between teachers and children, the environment design and beliefs about how children learn.
The demographic diversity of Australia means no single early learning philosophy will suit everyone. Parents can find it difficult choosing a service given the plethora on offer.
Below are three of the best known alternative educational philosophies used in early childhood education in Australia.
Steiner education (also known as Waldorf) is based on Rudolf Steiner’s educational philosophy. It originated in Germany in the early 20th century.
It is focused on self-directed learning, based on children’s interests. Steiner education encourages self-motivated learning that supports and encourages problem solving, critical thinking, creativity and social skills.
When learning is self-directed, children’s motivation