Learning Story Of The Year 2021 2021 2021

This category takes the approach of writing a letter to one individual child.

Learning Story of the Year Award

Shortlisted Entries - Early Childhood Ireland Learning Story of the Year

Space, Time and materials
Cheeky Cherubs Early Years Schools, Highfield Park, Carriganarra, Ballincollig, Co Cork.

When I have a camera in my hand, I know no fear
Beverton Preschool, 31 Beverton Drive, Donabate, Co Dublin.

Woody’s Maps
Creative Kids & Co., Assumption Primary School, Walkinstown, Dublin 12.

Play Video

Watch the above video to find out which of our shortlisted entries has won and see their reaction to the news!

Early Childhood Ireland

National Annual Awards

Learning Story of the Year Award

A ‘Learning Story’ records what an educator has seen a child (or group of children) doing in an early learning and care service. Learning Stories allow us to document a child’s learning. They are a tool for tuning into children’s worlds in a more profound, more meaningful way as educators. Learning stories can truly hear children, listen, watch and see, and extend a child’s learning.

Learning Stories are an effective and inclusive way of documentation and assessment in early childhood settings that require knowledgeable educators who understand children’s learning. Carr and Lee (2012) believe that learning stories are powerful ways of documenting learning, using the reciprocal relationships between the child, people, and the environment.

These narratives are observations of children’s participation in everyday activities, in everyday settings that demonstrate children’s growing identities, dispositions, thoughts, explorations, and communications. This natural way of documenting children’s journeys links strongly with the words, wonderings, questions and ideas from children. Early Childhood Ireland recognises these quality practices and is delighted to share these stories with our members through our learning story awards.

There are three awards in the Learning Stories Category

Award 1 Criteria for Short-listing and Judging – Learning Story of the Year Award

Please use the application form, in the Learning Story for an individual child, to demonstrate:



  • That it takes the form of a ‘letter to’ the child, a story approach, speaking directly to the child.
  • A story with clear beginning that is led by a child’s interest, i.e., an example of a child-led approach.


  • An extension to the child’s learning by the educator and setting, which follows the child’s initial lead.
  • That the educators have reflected on the story and what it means for and to the individual child.


  • An evident child’s voice, with clear quotes, descriptions of expressions, or include other means of communication, where possible.
  • Ensures that from the start, children are asked their views about what story or project they would like, demonstrating a dialogue between children and adults based on reciprocal respect.
  • Ensures that children are asked for their views throughout the telling of the story or conducting of the project.
  • Demonstrate that children’s views were considered, listened to, given due weight and given feedback on what happened to their views.
  • The child’s learning dispositions are demonstrated.


  • That the learning story is accessible to and shared with the child in the setting.
  • That the learning story is shared with the child’s family.
  • That the Learning Story is underpinned by the themes of the Aistear Framework. (However, it is not necessary for the story to make direct links to the learning goals and aims).


                                                                                                                  Total Marks



Application form

Documentation and Supporting Evidence requirements

Resources to support you in applying for this award.

Opening date

19 April 2021

Closing date

31 May 2021

Award Winners announced

8 October 2021

Please email kwhitham@earlychildhoodireland.ie if you have any questions.