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About the Early Learning Centre

Students posing next to books at the Early Learning Centre

The Ryerson Early Learning Centre (ELC) is the school's licensed laboratory early learning and child care centre.

We provide a full-day child care and early learning program for 65 children from ages 18 months to four years.

The ELC team consists of ten full-time Registered Early Childhood Educators. Each Educator holds a degree in Early Childhood Education, Early Childhood Studies, or related fields and brings a wealth of knowledge pertaining to pedagogy and inquiry practices. Our team is committed to providing early learning and care experiences that foster the growth and well-being of all the children in our program.

The ELC consists of four classrooms:



Toddler Room 152
(2 RECEs)

10 children (18 months - 30 months)

Toddler Room 163
(3 RECEs)

10-15 children (18 months - 30 months)

Preschool 167
(2 RECEs)

16 children (30 months - 4 years)

Preschool 158
(3 RECEs)

24 children (30 months - 4 years)

The ELC serves as a unique demonstration model of best practices in child care and early learning.  Staff endeavour to maintain excellent relationships with the families of the children through an active Parent Advisory Committee, social events and daily interaction with the parents.

The ELC is an active learning laboratory for students in the Early Childhood Studies' degree program.  Many students complete their field education experiences in the ELC. Students also come to the ELC to learn skills in observation and curriculum development.  The ELC accommodates visitors from all over the world and students from ECE diploma programs when possible. The ELC is a site for research in early childhood studies.

The central focus of the ELC programs is inquiry, play-based, active learning through children's interaction with well-planned environments and experiences. The planned curriculum consists of experiences and projects emerging from children's main inquiries and assessed developmental needs. 

Outdoor play and learning occurs in our own beautiful playground or in the quad. Children may also take supervised walks on the campus. The outdoor playground is another learning environment for the children and teachers plan meaningful learning opportunities to extend the children's knowledge of nature and themselves.  

The daily routines allow for a balance of indoor and outdoor play, small and large group activities, and an afternoon rest period as well as snacks and lunch. The success of the program is demonstrated by the children's ongoing developmental progress, joy of learning, the ease with which they adapt to the daily routines, their positive and engaging interactions with each other and with the teachers, and ongoing developmental progress.

The ELC is an inclusive learning setting. Children with special health, disabilities and/or developmental needs are fully included in our regular program, with a consultant from the Gerrard Resource Centre providing program support and consultation as needed.