Building on Children's Natural Curiosity

The Project Approach to Learning
Children learn when they are interested, when they can interact, question, connect, problem-solve, communicate and reflect.

The project approach is an investigation into real-world topics
Educators use observation and inquiry to identify what the children are interested in learning about. The learning takes place within a constructivist-based framework. That is; children construct their own knowledge with educators facilitating and guiding the process.

Phase 1: Make Plans

To better understand what children want to learn, a discussion takes place, questions are asked and information is recorded.

  • Educator guides the children in determining what it is they want to learn about a specific topic.

  • Educators inquire with children and document:

    What they know?

    What do they want to know?

    Who can they ask?

  • Children's responses guide the investigation.

Phase 2: Investigate

Together, the educator and children create an investigation plan. Inquiry-based learning takes place through many learning activities over the course of several weeks or even months.

  • Field study opportunities are determined using the information the children provided on whom they might ask. This may be on-site or off-site. 

  • Surveys and questionnaires are created using the information provided by the children regarding what they want to know.

  • Books on the topic are provided and definitions of new words are discussed.

  • Exploration and investigation takes place through learning experiences facilitated by the educator in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (S.T.E.A.M)

  • Learning concepts such as numbers, colours and alphabet are also easily implemented into this investigation style of learning.

Phase 3: Reflect

This is a time to celebrate accomplishments and to provide a summary of the project for families.

Through observation we know it's time to wrap up the project when ...

  • Children's interest is dissipating

  • When all the questions of what they want to know have been answered.

This phase of the project usually has a final activity with an invitation to parents to view the ...

  • Project summary board showing the progression of learning that took place.

  • Children's creations that came out of activities as part of the project.

  • Social opporunity with educators and other parents to discuss individual learning and progress.