3a program

We are giving families and children the best start in life through the revolutionary 3a (Abecedarian Approach Australia) program.

What is 3a?

The 3a program aims to stimulate children early (from 0-5 years old) in order to support their learning and development outcomes for the long term, with a focus on language development, helping all families get the support they need.

The program is one of the few evidence-based programs that integrates learning and development into a fun and effective approach to early childhood education.

A trial of the program at Flemington Street Children’s Centre from 2014 to 2016 showed overwhelmingly positive results. The trial was part of a three-year study conducted by the University of Melbourne. Results showed that a shift in methods used by the centre’s educators significantly improved children’s understanding of language, improving their speaking and listening skills in the longer term, while also having a range of positive impacts on the children’s health and wellbeing.

Moonee Valley first Victorian council to roll out 3a

The 3a program is now being rolled out across the municipality in response to these findings. Moonee Valley is the first council in Victoria to roll out this program.

We are also unique in that we will be using a collaborative approach involving practitioners from Maternal and Child Health, Moonee Valley Libraries, Family services, Long Day Care and Kindergarten services to ensure all young children are able to access this innovative approach to learning.

Background on 3a program

The 3a program stems from E4Kids (Effective Early Education Experiences for Kids) which is Australia’s largest longitudinal research project, released in 2017, assessing the effectiveness of Australian early childhood education and care programs.

The Abecedarian approach was first implemented in the United States in a study that followed 111 children from highly impoverished families over 30 years. They found the children’s educational and work opportunities were vastly improved as a result of the children’s language skills.

Language allows children to organise their thoughts and clearly explain their ideas. It equips them with the tools to express their feelings and interact with their peers and adults. When a child get older and they internalise this speech, those early language skills help to guide their behaviour.

You can find out more about the Abecedarian approach on the University of Melbourne’s website.

Last updated: Wednesday, 28 June 2017, 2:11 AM