"Wheel of Learning" is the diagram that illustrates the curriculum principles that guide practitioners in their daily work with children. It is built by 5 elements: Active Participatory Learning, Adult-child Interaction, The Daily Routine, Learning Environment and Assessment.
The HighScope educational approach is based on the belief that young children build or "construct" their knowledge of the world. That means learning is not simply a process of adults giving information to children. Rather, children are active learners - discovering things through direct experience with people, objects, events and ideas. They learn best from pursuing their own intersts while being actively supported and challenged by adults. In the classroom, HighScope teachers are as active and involved as the children. They give thoughtful attention to the materials they provide, the activities they plan and the ways they talk with children to both support and challenge what children are experiencing and thinking. HighScope calls this approach  active participatory learning - a process in which teachers and children are partners in the learning process. Active learning is at the center of the wheel of learning to highlight its importance in every other aspect of the curriculum.
In the HighScope curriculum, shared control is central to how adults and children interact. The curriculum has many specific strategies for accomplishing this goal. Children are in control of child-sized decisions such as where to play, how to play, and what and who to play with. Adults are in charge of adult-sized decisions, including establishing the daily routine, arranging and equipping the classroom, and keeping children physically and psycholologically safe. HighScope classrooms have neither a directive nor an "anything-goes" atmosphere. Instead, HighScope promotes a supportive climate in which adults and children are partners throughout the day.
Research indicates that the way adults interact with children plays a very important role in children's learning and development. Studies of relationship between teachers' interaction styles and positive outcomes for children support the importance of achild oriented interaction style. These studies demonstrate that in classrooms where teachers are responsive, guiding and nurturing, children take more innitiative and are more likely to be actively involved and persistant in their work.
The HighScope dailu routine is designed to provide the consistency and predictability that children and adults need while providing enough flexibility that children feel neither rushed nor bored as they carry out their activities. The parts of the day include time for children to plan, to carry out their plans, to recall and reflect on their actions, and to engage in small and large group activities. The schedule is the same everyday, with each component taking a specific amount of time. This regualarly gives children a sense of control and helps them to act independently.
Environments that foster active learning require thoughtful planning. Unlike some other types of programs in which adults plan and set out specific materials for children to use each day, in HighScope programs, it's the children who decide what they need for their work-time plans. Careful attention to the room arrangement, types of materials provided, and storage of those materials help children follow through on their ideas and build on their learning experiences.
In  HighScope classrooms, adults take daily notes on their observation about children. These notes are called "anecdotes" and focus on what children do and say. Anecdotes enable adults to see the children and the classroom objectively. They also help to answer these important questions:
- What are the children's interests?
- What are children learning?
- What areas of learning are we currently supporting?
- Are any of the ares of learning overlooked or not supported?
- What materials or experiences might be added?

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