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The effectiveness of pedagogy

This page explains how and when aspects of quality pedagogy can be highly effective or less effective. 

Highly effective quality pedagogy

Quality pedagogy is highly effective when aspects of early years education are holistic, connected and:

  • children’s rights to quality learning drive the curriculum – where the child and the family have a strong, authentic voice
  • ideas for experiences and learning opportunities arise from children and families’ interests, curiosity, culture
  • all learning is relevant and meaningful to children
  • educators listen to children’s desires and interests in collaborating on routines
  • adult involvement is purposeful, considered and deliberate
  • children develop curiosity, confidence, imagination and explore and have fun during extended periods of learning through play
  • incidental and planned group times happen on many occasions, both inside and out and learning is supported at every opportunity
  • flexible use of resources both natural and man-made offer a diverse range of learning possibilities
  • formative assessment is critical in supporting children’s learning
  • pedagogical documentation includes analysis, reflection and plans for future learning
  • children’s behaviours are supported sensitively and in a caring manner with a focus on wellbeing and learning
  • literacy and numeracy skills and concepts are developed and enhanced in a holistic manner
  • technology is an integrated part of a holistic learning environment.

Less effective quality pedagogy

Quality pedagogy is less effective when aspects of early years education:

  • are independently planned by the educator
  • are inflexible – based on educators’ agendas, or the weather
  • expect all children to complete the same work or activity
  • are solely based on themes
  • have irrelevant or meaningless tasks, activities or experiences
  • have adults directing or supervising involvement
  • are controlling of children’s play – which is brief rather than long and deep
  • are focused on talking rather than doing – long, large group times with educators talking and where more time is spent on rules than learning
  • regularly use worksheets, templates or structured activities with ‘limited use’ resources
  • collect scrapbooks of children’s artwork or the day’s events or photos with no assessment, reflection or evaluation of learning
  • isolate children from peers and role models from whom they could learn or think about their behaviour
  • use discipline rather than support or guidance when responding to children’s behaviour
  • there is a narrow focus on literacy or numeracy that looks the same for all children
  • use technology as a reward or punishment.

Family Day Care Business and Customer Support Centre

Phone (metro): 8343 6533
Phone (country): 1300 551 890
Email: educationfdcbusiness@sa.gov.au