Welcome to Bronte Harbour Nursery School…where every single child is valued, supported, encouraged and treasured.
We are committed to providing a high-quality program that supports children’s development, learning, health and well-being. Our exceptional staff are caring, responsive educators. We are known for the positive, genuine relationships that we nurture between our staff, the children and the families of Bronte Harbour. We believe that these relationships are the cornerstone to an exceptional learning journey.
As part of our dedication to providing the best care and learning experiences for your child, we have been active participants in good standing with Halton’s Quality First initiative since 2010.
Our programs are guided by the document How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years, 2014. The document is organized around 4 foundational conditions that are important for a child to grow and flourish. The 4 foundations (pages 7 and 8 of HDLH) are:
Belonging refers to a sense of connectedness to others, an individual’s experiences of being valued, of forming relationships with others and making contributions as part of a group, a community, the natural world.
Well-being addresses the importance of physical and mental health and wellness. It incorporates capacities such as self-care, sense of self, and self-regulation skills.
Engagement suggests a state of being involved and focused. When children are able to explore the world around them with their natural curiosity and exuberance, they are fully engaged. Through this type of play and inquiry, they develop skills such as problem solving, creative thinking, and innovating, which are essential for learning and success in school and beyond.
Expression or communication (to be heard, as well as to listen) may take many different forms. Through their bodies, words, and use of materials, children develop capacities for increasingly complex communication. Opportunities to explore materials support creativity, problem solving, and mathematical behaviours. Language-rich environments support growing communication skills, which are foundational for literacy.
These conditions apply to every child regardless of age, ability, culture, language, geography or setting.
- Our staff will promote the health, safety, nutrition and well-being of each child by providing a clean, safe healthy environment. We provide daily snacks based on Canada’s Food Guide, and provide access to drinking water at all times. We limit transitions and provide a predictable routine to support the developing self-esteem and confidence in each child. Staff will be familiar with all information pertaining to any medical conditions, special needs, allergies, food restrictions and special instructions from parents regarding diet and exercise.
- Our staff will support positive and responsive interactions among the children, parents, child-care providers and community partners. This is achieved by ensuring that our team of educators is made up of only professional, well-trained, responsive and caring individuals who recognize and support parents as primary caregivers, and understand the importance of building positive relationships in order to foster a sense of belonging for everyone; adults and children alike. We will ensure that all parents are directed to resources outside of the center if necessary or requested. Recognizing that local community partners (such as Halton Region) are a valuable asset, we are committed to working in cooperation with them as they support the children, their families, and our staff.
- We believe that all children are competent, capable, curious and rich in potential. We will ensure that they are encouraged to interact and communicate in a positive way, and that their growing ability to self-regulate (recognized as an ability to control or manage powerful emotions, deal effectively with stress and being able to recover from it) is supported. By being responsive and attuned to each child’s individual needs, we can encourage the healthy development of a child’s sense of well-being.
- We will foster the children’s exploration, play and inquiry by providing an environment rich in variety and content, and one that encourages active play and choices. We will offer engaging, interesting learning spaces where the children’s interests are reflected and their explorations are invited, supported and encouraged. We will maintain our environment to ensure that toys and equipment are accessible to all, and where adaptations are made as needed. We will provide both child-initiated and adult-supported experiences. Our educators will introduce ideas, concepts, materials and experiences to support each child’s growing knowledge, at a level that suits their individual learning and development.
- Children will engage in both active and quieter play daily. Participation is based on children’s needs, parental directions, and program requirements. Our classrooms have protected play spaces for individual/small group activities (ex. tables for 2, protected block building areas) and cozy areas for rest and relaxation, as well as open play areas for larger groups. We also go to the gymnasium every day where there is plenty of room for active play.
- Ongoing communication with parents is a vital part of our program and is encouraged. We welcome all parent input, with particular focus on the importance of information shared about their children. The staff, in turn, will also provide feedback to the parents on an ongoing basis. The communications may be in person, by phone or email, or via our website or other posted communications. Each school year, parents are invited to fill in our Parent Feedback Form (usually distributed in late March). Open communication is a key component of the positive and responsive interactions we build with the parents.
- Bronte Harbour Nursery School requires all staff to participate in ongoing professional learning opportunities. At a minimum, each staff member must participate in the prescribed number of Professional Development hours required by the current Level of Quality First. Additional learning over and above the Quality First minimum is encouraged, and supported by the organization.
- Bronte Harbour Nursery School is committed to providing a high-quality, play-based learning experience, in a physically and emotionally healthy, safe environment, for every child enrolled. To this end, we will document, discuss and reflect on the impact the above strategies have on the children and their families. As reflective practitioners, we will review and adjust our practice as necessary to ensure that the goals, approaches and strategies are implemented at all times.
Our program statement uses references and information from
“How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years, 2014”