What is national quality standard? | quality area 1 – standard 1. 1 the educational program enhances each child’s learning and development – element 1. 1. 3 what is national quality standard

What is National Quality Standard? | Quality Area 1 – Standard 1.1 The Educational Program Enhances Each Child’s Learning and Development – Element 1.1.3

In the last blog we shared with you information on National Quality area 1 Standard 1.1 Element 1.1.2. Continuing on with the Quality area 1, today we will explore Element 1.1.3 in detail.

Standard 1.1 is further split in to three elements as below:

1.1.1      Approved learning framework

Curriculum decision-making contributes to each child’s learning and development outcomes in relation to their identity, connection with community, wellbeing, and confidence as learners and effectiveness as communicators.                              

1.1.2      Child-centred

Each child’s current knowledge, strengths, ideas, culture, abilities and interests are the foundation of the program. 

1.1.3      Program learning opportunities

All aspects of the program, including routines, are organised in ways that maximise opportunities for each child’s learning.

Let us take each element one by one.

1.1.3      Program learning opportunities

All aspects of the program including routines, are organised in ways that maximise opportunities for each child’s learning.

Aim of Element 1.1.3 is to ensure that all aspects of the educational program, including interactions, experiences, routines and events (both planned and unplanned) provide opportunities for children’s learning and development (Early Years Learning Framework, p. 9; Framework for School Age Care, p. 6), and for educators to interact with children in meaningful ways that empower children’s choices and decision-making.

Educators adopt a holistic approach to planning and facilitating learning throughout the program, including during transitions and routines. Educators are alert to learning opportunities to extend children’s learning during planned and unplanned experiences. They support children to follow their interests and to engage in uninterrupted play.

Effective routines and transitions are designed to support children and are regarded as equally important as planned or spontaneous play experiences or group times. Routines, such as mealtimes or toileting, provide predictability to assist children to feel safe, secure and confident to explore and learn. Effective transitions reduce stress and support children’s sense of belonging.

When a service goes through assessment and rating an assessor may observe the following:


  • using all aspects of the program to undertake intentional teaching and support child directed learning
  • making decisions based on best learning outcomes for children rather than convenient options suited to educators
  • planning and implementing transitions and routines that support individual children’s preferences and requirements
  • minimising the times during which children are expected to do the same thing at the same time, or to wait for long periods without engaging in play or interactions
  • using routines and play experiences to interact with children to build attachments
  • initiating one-to-one interactions with children during routine activities to ensure these provide opportunities for positive interactions and learning
  • collaborating with children about routines and procedures
  • encouraging children to guide younger children during routines


  • participating collaboratively in events and experiences and having opportunities to contribute to decisions
  • having opportunities to revisit and discuss their learning during routines
  • being given choices during routines and transition times
  • directing and initiating learning experiences
  • engaged in a range of play experiences throughout the day
  • having opportunities to extend their interests, experiences and activities, such as being able to continue working on a construction or artwork
  • developing autonomy by taking increasing responsibility for self-help and basic health routines
  • supporting younger children to organise equipment, participate in learning experiences and understand behaviour expectations of the service

Assessor may discuss the following:

  • educators’ current understanding of individual children’s knowledge, strengths, ideas, culture, abilities and interests, and how they have developed this understanding of each child
  • how educators’ curriculum decision-making builds on each child’s knowledge, strengths, ideas, culture, abilities and interests
  • how the educational leader and educators support decision-making, and review and discuss program planning
  • how educators support children to actively participate in experiences and guide their own learning.

Assessor may sight the following:

  • how the service organises its program and routines to maximise opportunities for children’s learning
  • how children are involved in program decision-making, contributing to the learning environment, assisting in everyday routines and transitions including menu planning and food preparation
  • strategies used by the service to encourage children to take a leading role in designing the program and organising the routines.

In the next blog we will focus on Element 1.2.1 of Standard 1.2 of Quality area 1.

Sourced from National Quality standard published by Australian Children’s Education & Care Quality Authority – https://www.acecqa.gov.au/sites/default/files/acecqa/files/NQF/Guide-to-the-NQF-3-Guide-to-the-NQS-Part-A.pdf