Our main aim in Early Years is to make school a fun and engaging environment where students feel comfortable and enjoy learning. Students are respected as individuals and are encouraged to engage in a range of learning experiences in order to extend their interests and skills. Communication development is a high priority, enabling students to further express themselves through gesture, speech, Key Word Sign language and visuals. Foundational skills such as dressing, toileting, eating and looking after their own belongings are an important focus in order to support our students to develop age appropriate independence skills.

Students learn key social skills including working within groups to develop turn taking, waiting and walking together. Excursions are directly tied to our classroom curriculum and help to consolidate learning and enable students to transfer skills into other environments. Functional learning outcomes are planned for each individual student in all curriculum areas, such as Mathematics, Literacy and with the development of interpersonal skills that are challenging and achievable; allowing all students to experience success.

Perceptual Motor Program (PMP): All of our Early Years students participate in a PMP program as part of their classroom curriculum. This program not only focuses on extending gross motor skills, but it helps children develop their ability to receive, interpret and respond successfully to sensory information. It includes tasks that focus on hand-eye/foot-eye coordination, balance, locomotion and fitness. These skills are important for learning readiness and are foundation skills for many everyday tasks and games. Occupational Therapists, our school Physiotherapist, Speech Pathologists, Teachers and Teacher Assistants work collaboratively to adapt and extend this program to ensure the students are continually developing their skills and abilities.

Play Therapy: A new and exciting teaching and learning initiative embedded within our Early Years curriculum is Play Therapy. Play is not only a major leisure activity for all children; it also is the primary way through which they learn about their world. Through play, our students develop many foundational skills, including:

  • Communication and social skills
  • Turn taking, sharing and initiation
  • Problem solving skills
  • Gross and fine motor skills