An enabling environment provides children with the space and resources to play, explore and learn. The environment is a crucial aspect of our offering at Kids Planet and is widely evidenced within the Early Years as being a key factor in supporting children’s learning and development. At Kids Planet, you will notice a calm environment; a neutral space, accented with well thought out resources that are purposely placed to support and extend children’s learning. We enhance our play spaces regularly by reflecting on the children’s needs and their specific interests.
Indoor and Outdoor learning may seem similar; however, there is a huge difference. Taking indoor resources outside does not make it a true outdoor learning experience. For example, an indoor water tray taken into the garden is still indoor water play, the only difference being the children may now have to battle the elements while they dip their hands in. The aim is to make outdoor learning a unique and a completely different experience from what children already have access to indoors. Our play spaces are well thought out and regularly reviewed to provide a variety of opportunities for children both in and outdoors.
Open-ended resources offer a wider variety of opportunities. They allow children to exercise their creative and critical thought process, encourage discovery, collaboration, risk taking and movement. However, most importantly they give children time to revel in the simplicities and delight of the everyday. What may look like a pile of scrap and loose parts to some, is a fabulous treasure chest of possibilities to a child. You may see this through the beautiful treasures our team have discovered when hunting through charity shops for magical items to capture the children’s imagination.
Experience shows that children benefit hugely by exposure to books from an early age. Right from the start, lots of opportunities should be provided for children to engage with books that fire their imagination and interest. They should be encouraged to choose and peruse books freely as well as sharing them when read by an adult.
A Kids Planet mantra that our teams will be familiar with is “what are we doing and why.” Our teams are empowered to reflect continuously on the individual environments, experiences and activities they create for the children and this enables our team to really question and reflect on the ‘why’. Our management team frequently challenge our teams with our mantra to ensure that team are confident and knowledgeable that everything we do is purposeful with children’s learning and development at the heart of all of the decisions made.