Consistency, above all else, is critical. It's what sets the tone and immediately puts at ease a child in their environment.
Professor Donna Pendergast, Dean and Head of Education and Professional Studies at Griffith University, says safety and a sense of security in the learning environment underpins everything.
Professor Pendergast says equally as important is the sense of community.
"The optimal way to provide care is to focus, first, on wellbeing," she says.
"By minimising risk factors and ensuring needs are met, children are being given the right environment for learning.
"The sense of belonging is just as important,"
This, Professor Pendergast says, is where community and being able to draw on the wealth of knowledge we have now, comes into the picture.
We are in an era where we have an unprecedented understanding of the brain and development; more so than any other time in our history, she says.
"Kids today have the benefit of that knowledge."
And with that knowledge comes robust frameworks and a better understanding of what works and what doesn't.
It also backs the educators and teachers; giving them another tool for their collective kit bags and bolstering their confidence.
In the end, it all points back to that critical factor of safe, secure, consistent and calm learning environments.
Performance coach Rowena Hardy, of Minds Aligned, is a master of neurolinguistic programming and cites consistency and close personal contact as being the most fundamental of needs for children in their first five years.
She says that consistency and contact gives the child the safety they need to feel at that specific time of their brain's development and as such, they will feel safe.
"Children need to feel safe to learn," Hardy says.
It makes sense. Which is why experts across the sector have adopted the approach of calm and consistent early learning environments recommending a balance between intentional and child-led play-based learning, in an environment which is reliably safe and predictable.
"There has been a great shift from the children just being 'looked after'," early learning educator and mentor Kirsty Brown says.
"We need to role model what is okay and what’s not – in a safe environment with a calm and professional approach," the Goodstart teacher says.
"Modelled behaviour means we follow the child's lead and respond accordingly, we interact on their level, we allow them to show their interests, we take the time to watch, we develop problem solving strategies and we enable the verbalising of emotions."
Central to this approach – and equally, resultant from it – is a predictable and consistent environment which facilitates the development of the child.