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SHS Garden Journal Blog

Using the Early Years Learning Framework Outcomes to Support Sustainability

Friday, April 11, 2014

Each day in Child Care Services opportunities for introducing Sustainability are available. Concepts that support The Early Years Learning Framework and My Time Our Place outcomes may be overlooked. By thinking about our own practice and being thoughtful of the lens' we use to do so, we can provide both the children that we work with and ourselves an opportunity to learn about our local community and the world we live in. 

The Early Years Learning Framework and My Time Our Place are measured against 5 key learning outcomes:

Learning Outcome 1: By talking about feelings when discussing our precious
fresh water supply and discussing strategies that the children may be involved in,
discuss the need to be aware of our own Environmental Footprint. Children learn to interact with care, empathy and respect. Children have a strong sense of identity.

Learning Outcome 2:
 Involve children in waste management and allow them to be involved in solutions about were their rubbish goes. This could be through simply separating waste into different bins labelled with pictures, or establishing a Worm Farm or Compost Bin. Discuss the different types of resources the children enjoy working with and if they can be sourced locally. Children become socially responsible and show respect for their environment. Children are connected with and contribute to their world. 

Learning Outcome 3: Going on local Community walks and identifying birds
and plant life gives children an understanding of their local community and who
they share it with. Discussion about healthy eating can be supported by growing
favourite vegetables such as carrots or peas. The story of the "Enormous
Turnip" could be acted out. Children have a strong sense of wellbeing.

Learning Outcome 4:
 Recognise that when children jump in to a puddle they are
engaging in an investigation. Build on a child's interest in their local community
and environment. Educators can build on children's inquisitiveness by
introducing both natural and recycled materials to encourage questions and
hypothesising. Children are confident and involved learners.

Learning Outcome 5:
 Introduce the seasons to children explaining the
changes each season brings, and grow seasonal vegetables. Expanding
on this to encourage discussion and terms to represent what is occurring, like asking
"Where does a cloud come from?", could provide a discussion about precipitation
and condensation. Even very young children can be involved with songs and
stories about rain and water. "Tiddalick" is a great story to support this concept.
Introduce and use resources that are recycled such as boxes or containers as
props for children to use, explaining to them how important it is for all of us to
recycle and not over-consume the natural resources of our community. Children
are effective communicators.

If we consider ways in which sustainable practices can be embedded throughout
the day, our philosophy will reflect this.


  • Commonwealth of Aust. 2009b; Belonging, Being and Becoming, The Early
Years Learning Framework of Australia, Canberra ACT; DEEWR,
http; learning
  • Raban, B, Margetts, K, Church, A, Deans, J, 2010; The Early Years Learning
Framework in Practice; MA Education
  • Vegotsky, L, 1978; Mind and Society: The Development of Higher Mental
Processes MS: Cambridge University Press.

Written by: Sharon Dodd-Gilhooly - SHS Facilitator; March 2014

Copyright Seed Harvest Spoon Education Foundation 

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