HIPPY is the most effective way to provide early childhood learning in the home, improving children’s school-readiness.
Children’s earliest and most powerful learning comes from their family. Through a structured education program, HIPPY helps parents lay the foundations for success at school by teaching their child literacy, numeracy and language skills as well as physical skills, so they develop a love of learning that lasts throughout their lives.
HIPPY children graduate from the program with literacy and numeracy skills above the Australian average. The program:
Over two years (in the years before and after starting full-time school), HIPPY children work through weekly or fortnightly packs of play-based, educational activities with their parents and family. They are encouraged to ask questions and try new things; developing their confidence and passion for learning, which enables school-readiness.
Parents are supported to shape their child’s learning opportunities around their strengths and interests; and to bring learning off the activity pack page and into the world. We call it ‘Everywhere Learning’: parents take HIPPY activities to everyday situations or in places, encouraging other family members to get involved.
The Brotherhood of St Laurence recognises the importance of listening and incorporating children’s voices into the design and delivery of children and family programs. The BSL believes in a focus on child agency and listening to the input of children participating in HIPPY. In 2019, HIPPY Australia initiated the second Children’s Voices listening tour based on the framework in the “Engaging Children’s Voices in the Early Years Practice Guidelines”. The guidelines were created this year based on many years of experience, study and interaction with international leaders. They provide the practical steps required to meaningfully engage with young children.
My son has always been a shy child and so I jumped at the chance to do the HIPPY with him in the hope that it would prepare him with the skills required for kindy. We also attend the fortnightly Group Meetings with other HIPPY parents and it’s not unusual for him to turn his back on people when they are trying to talk to him, and so it was no surprise that when we first attended group, my son would not leave my side and would not talk to anybody. As the weeks went on he eventually started with the odd hello to his Tutor and familiar faces. Over time he became less reserved and involved himself in activities he usually wouldn’t join in. At today’s group he left my side without any prompting and played outside for the entire morning. I saw a new confidence in him. Attending Group Meetings has really helped my son socially and this will have such a positive impact when it comes to starting kindy next year.
Story from a HIPPY parent
As a learning program, HIPPY aims to instil a love of learning in both children and their HIPPY parents by:
Research points conclusively to the crucial importance of the early years in shaping and influencing lifelong outcomes and development.
The most powerful learning comes from a children’s family. By building parents’ skills and confidence to take responsibility for their children’s learning, HIPPY creates significant, lasting impacts on children’s learning and development, that will be felt throughout their lives.