The importance of inclusive practices, equity of opportunity and anti-discriminatory practices cannot be underestimatedThis Social Inclusion Week, we took time to reflect on the message that everyone should feel included and valued, and that every individual should have the opportunity to participate fully in society. The consequences of exclusion, driven by unconscious biases, can impact both children in the centres and our colleagues. The first step towards change is self-awareness, coupled with a willingness to learn. 

The Powerful role of Inclusion in ECEC 

Many early childhood settings argue that inclusion is emphasised in early years settings as educators already endeavour to meet the individual learning needs of each child.  Young children may have visible or invisible differences that combined with their emerging development make their challenges more likely to be overlooked or misunderstood.   

Inclusion means educators are encouraged to be listening to very young children and their families, with their ears and their eyes, be sensitive to their needs and interests, and aware of their unique ways of communicating.  Self-awareness of their own stereotyping behaviours and open and honest work towards breaking those barriers is a continuous reflection for educators.   

Children are good at accepting others’ differences, it is important that educators are aware that they are not unintentionally teaching any biases to the children they work with.  

Social Inclusion Week 

Social Inclusion Week serves as a timely reminder of the ongoing importance of these principles. It encourages us to continue striving for a society where everyone has the opportunity to participate fully and feel valued. 

As you explore these concepts, you may find these books to be valuable resources for your services. 

  • Books that develop ideas of inclusion and empathy

Professional Development on Inclusive Practices

Interested in deepening your understanding of inclusive practices? Book our workshop on “Inclusive Practices” tailored for Early to Middle Childhood Education and Care settings. This session will explore the vital elements of inclusion and practical strategies to foster inclusive environments, empowering services to embrace and implement inclusive practices. Click here to book.