The development of Aistear, the national curriculum framework for children from birth to six years of age was informed by an extensive literature review and consultation process. As part of the consultation a portraiture study was undertaken to include the voices of children in the Framework. This paper looks at what the children in the study said, and highlights a number of key messages based on their experiences in their settings. These messages focus on holistic learning and development through play and active exploration, the importance of relationships, and in particular the crucial role played by parents, the power of communication, the importance of a sense of identity and belonging and the benefits of observing and listening to children. Children¿s voices in the Framework for Early Learning ¿ A portraiture study (Daly et al. 2007) provides background information on the study and outlines the methodologies used. This paper concentrates on the valuable insights into childre n¿s early learning and development that the study provided. These insights have informed the Framework for Early Learning.