Belonging, Being & Becoming - The Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) is Australia’s first national early childhood curriculum framework and the first significant step in delivering the Australian Government’s commitment to providing high-quality early childhood education and care throughout Australia.
The curriculum framework guides educators in partnership with parents and caregivers, to extend and enrich children’s learning from birth to five years and develop a foundation for future success in learning.
The Early Years Learning Framework describes early childhood as a time of Belonging, Being and Becoming.
Experiencing belonging – knowing where and with whom you belong – is integral to human existence. Children belong first to a family, a cultural group, a neighbourhood and a wider community. Belonging acknowledges children’s interdependence with others and the basis of relationships in defining identities. In early childhood, and throughout life, relationships are crucial to a sense of belonging. Belonging is central to being and becoming in that it shapes who children are and who they can become.
Childhood is a time to be, to seek and make meaning of the world. Being recognises the significance of the here and now in children’s lives. It is about the present and them knowing themselves, building and maintaining relationships with others, engaging with life’s joys and complexities, and meeting challenges in everyday life. The early childhood years are not solely preparation for the future but also about the present.
Children’s identities, knowledge, understandings, capacities, skills and relationships change during childhood. They are shaped by many different events and circumstances. Becoming reflects this process of rapid and significant change that occurs in the early years as young children learn and grow. It emphasises learning to participate fully and actively in society (EYLF, 2009 p. 7)
Source: Department of Education, Employment and Workplace.(2009). Belonging, Being and Becoming – The Early Years Learning Framework for Australia. Commonwealth of Australia: Barton, ACT.