Philosophy and Pedagogy
At the Seneca ECE Lab School, our philosophy is a living organism, ever changing. We seek to fuse together inspiration from a variety of places; Reggio Emilia, Indigenous knowledges and ways of being, Frances and David Hawkins, to name a few as they manifest meaning within our Canadian context. We entwine our practice with How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years.
How Does Learning Happen? (HDLH) is centered around what the document describes as the four foundations of learning; Belonging, Well-being, Engagement and Expression.
These encompass the child, family, and educator. The Lab School recognizes these and also considers the learning environment, community and land an integral part of these relationships in learning. The ECE Lab School has a shared vision of these foundations and our work continues to evolve while building upon them. We see these foundations come to life through the pedagogical principles also outlined in HDLH. While we walk alongside children, we also see ourselves as learners in this relationship, living with reciprocity with the children, land and community.
Image from HDLH, 2014
The four foundations outlined in HDLH are lived and expressed in our work in the daily life and relations within the school. In many ways, the document breathes and is given life through the lived experiences of the work of the children, educators, families and community. We honour all four foundations as individual elements that are inextricably linked; one no more important than the other. Each foundation is woven together by threads creating the tapestry of our community. The foundations outlined in HDLH are not something to be done, but something to be lived. They have become a part of who we are and how we live well together.