Exceeding guidance for Standard 3.2: Use

Overview

The following guidance is questions for services to ask of their own practice to consider whether their service Exceeds the NQS in Standard 3.2.

Authorised officers determine the rating of each Standard by considering each theme in relation to each Standard descriptor.
For further information on the three Exceeding themes, including what authorised officers consider when reviewing whether evidence demonstrates a theme, see Exceeding NQS theme guidance.  
You can find case studies describing examples of practice for this Standard at https://www.acecqa.gov.au/assessment/exceeding-themes

Questions to guide reflection on practice for Standard 3.2

Exceeding theme 1: Practice is embedded in service operations

 
  • How do educators, the educational leader, and the co-ordinator demonstrate a deep understanding of the requirements of the Standard, concept and the component elements, and a commitment to high quality practice at all times?
  • How are children actively engaged in child-directed learning experiences that demonstrate environmental awareness and/or responsibility?
  • How do observed practices and discussions demonstrate a whole-of-service approach to the use of space and resources that is inclusive, purposeful, creative, and flexible, and enhances learning, development and wellbeing outcomes for all children?
  • Are all educators:
    • able to explain how the use of the physical environment is organised to be flexible, support safe and inclusive access by all children and promote each child’s meaningful engagement and participation in play-based learning?
    • confidently able to organise and adapt spaces and resources as needed throughout the day, week, and month to ensure a consistently inclusive and flexible play-based learning environment for all children?
    • able to describe how they cater for the different learning capacities and learning styles of all children and allow for reasonable adjustments to assist the meaningful participation of children with disabilities or children experiencing barriers to learning?
    • able to explain how they create culturally safe and responsive learning environments that reflect, respect and affirm the identities and enrich the lives of all children and families?
    • able to describe how they actively promote opportunities for all children to learn on and from Country, including learning about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander rich sustainable practices?
    • able to demonstrate an ongoing commitment to caring for the natural environment and fostering environmental awareness and responsibility in children, and aware of how their practice aligns with practice across the service?
  • How does the service’s approach to creating inclusive learning environments, engaging in sustainable practice across all dimensions of sustainability and supporting environmental responsibility reflect the service’s philosophy?

Exceeding theme 2: Practice is informed by critical reflection

 
  • How is the service’s approach to organising inclusive, play-based learning environments and to supporting sustainable practices and environmental responsibility:
    • reflective of robust debate, discussion, and opportunities for input by all educators, and informed by critical reflection?
    • informed by current recognised guidance and/or research evidence?
  • Is any change to the service’s approach to organising inclusive, play-based learning environments and to supporting sustainable practices and environmental responsibility understood by all and implemented appropriately?
  • How do all educators regularly reflect on opportunities to:
    • support every child’s meaningful participation and further enhance all children’s learning, development and wellbeing through the creative and flexible use of space, equipment and resources that is responsive to children’s strengths, culture, languages, interests and capabilities?
    • support children’s environmental awareness and responsibility?
  • How does the service team reflect together on opportunities to:
    • further enhance all children’s learning, development and wellbeing through the creative and flexible use of space, equipment and resources that is responsive to children’s strengths, culture, languages, interests and capabilities?
    • strengthen the service’s engagement in environmental sustainability, and work together to implement agreed changes across the service?

Exceeding theme 3: Practice is shaped by meaningful engagement with families and/or the community

 
  • How does the service’s use and organisation of space and resources:
    • reflect the unique geographical, cultural, social and community context of the service and welcome, respect and draw on the voices, priorities and strengths of the children and families at the service?
  • In what ways does the service’s approach to environmentally sustainable practice and support of environmental responsibility:
    • reflect the unique geographical, cultural, social and community context of the service?
    • reflect recognition of and respect for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history, culture and sustainable practices?
    • welcome, respect and draw on the voices, priorities and strengths of the children and families at the service?
  • How does the service collaborate with family and/or community partners to:
    • foster an inclusive, welcoming, engaging and flexible play-based learning environment?
    • design indoor and outdoor spaces that draw on and reflect the diverse cultures of the broader community, for example engaging with the local Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community to design an environment that reflects their culture?
    • engage in sustainable practices within the service and support environmental awareness and responsibility across the service community?
  • How are children engaged in excursions that utilise community environments and support child-directed exploration and discovery?
  • How do educators support families to develop understanding and engage in environmentally responsible and sustainable practices?

See the ACECQA Educational Leader Resource for information for educational leaders.