What does the word environment mean to you?

Bear Park St Clair, welcoming environment for children
Bear Park St Clair

What comes to mind when we first think of the environment is the space that directly surrounds us, but there is so much more to environment. The environment is a living and changing system that is not only a physical space, but also a place that acknowledges time and roles within our social realities.

Bear Park St Heliers - Auckland Childcare
Bear Park St Heliers

Our environment conditions the way we think, feel and behave and dramatically affects how we perceive and connect with our wider worlds. The space around us reflects the culture of the people who create it.

At Bear Park, our centres are carefully designed as social and active spaces where shared exchange is viewed as essential in learning. Through shared activity, communication, and cooperation, our children co-construct their worlds via a sharing of knowledge. One child’s idea develops another’s or represents a new path to be explored.

Bear Park Henderson - Auckland childcare
Bear Park Henderson

Bear Park centres create environments that focus on the child’s wellbeing and favour relationships and interactions between their wider community of teachers, staff and parents.

Inspired by the Reggio Emilia Approach, we see the environment as “the third teacher” that acts in the role of an educator. Bear Park environments undergo frequent modifications by both the children and teachers to remain up-to-date and responsive to the learning needs of the growing child.

Bear Park Epsom - Auckland Childcare - Early Childhood Environment
Bear Park Epsom

So from this perspective, when we, at Bear Park, think about environment as a social space that plays the role of the third educator, we consider environment to be:

A place that invites you in to stay awhile and play.

Bear Park Mairangi Bay - Auckland Childcare

A place where you feel welcomed and feel a sense of belonging.

Bear Park Childcare making children feel welcome

A place to encounter others and make friends.

Bear Park Childcare - Environment to make friends in
Bear Park Remuera

A place where you feel valued for being who you are.

Feeling valued at Bear Park Childcare

A place where your cultural identity is visible and valued.

Bear Park - Auckland Childcare Multicultural Environment

A place that intrigues and excites you to engage with it.

Playful-Intriguing-Environment - Bear Park Childcare

A place that offers you a multitude of textured landscapes.

Bear Park Environment - Textured Landscapes

A place that infuses the natural world with the recycled.

Natural and recycled world - Bear Park Mt Eden
Bear Park Mt Eden

A place that has purpose.

Bear Park Henderson
Bear Park Henderson

A place where respect is shown.

Bear Park Albany
Bear Park Albany

A place where small group discoveries can be made.

Bear Park Childcare - Small discoveries
Bear Park Childcare – Small discoveries

A place where technologies abound.

Bear Park Childcare - Creative Environments using Technology

A place of multiple languages.

Bear Park Childcare - Multiple languages

So, what does the word ENVIRONMENT mean to you?­­­­

More To Explore

Wearable Arts Bear Park Sue Stevely-Cole Royal Akarana Yacht Club

Wearable Arts by Bear Park

Within Bear Park, we view not only our children but also our teachers as resourceful creative thinkers, so with this in mind, we have once