Practical approaches and philosophies in early childhood education and care

Linda Henderson, Susan Edwards

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Otherpeer-review


In this chapter you will find an overview of the:

Highscope approach

Cultural historical approach

Reggio Emilia educational project approach

Forest Schools approach

Montessori approach

Multiple Intelligence Theory and Practice.

Western-European approaches to early childhood education are informed by various beliefs about young children and their learning. These beliefs are reflected in philosophical positions about the purpose of learning and, therefore, how educators should teach. They are also evident in theoretical ideas that have been created to explain children’s development and learning. Early childhood education is an interesting field because it has drawn on a mixture of such philosophies and theories to create different ‘approaches’ to learning and teaching with very young children (Arthur et al., 2015). This is one of the reasons why Belonging, Being and Becoming: The early years learning framework (EYLF) for Australia (Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations [DEEWR], 2009) recognises that there are a range of theories and philosophies that early childhood educators draw upon in their work (p. 11).

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUnderstanding Early Childhood Education and Care in Australia
Subtitle of host publicationPractices and Perspectives
EditorsJoanne Ailwood, Wendy Boyd, Maryanne Theobald
Place of PublicationCrows Nest NSW Australia
PublisherAllen & Unwin
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781000252118
ISBN (Print)9781003118329, 9781743318607
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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