Wow what a very busy few weeks we have had. One of our Rural Care mums Indi came to visit and talked about her Indian culture - Sikh. We watched how a traditional turban is wrapped using a 7 meter long piece of cotton, it was really cool. Indi also talked to us about traditional Indian food and the Palace made of real gold.
Last week on Tuesday we had the Point Pearce Kindy Children visit us for Harmony day. We made a little kite for our Harmony Day Banner “we all belong under the one sky”. We enjoyed playing with our Point Pearce Kindy friends and sharing some oranges. On Wednesday we had our first excursion which was to the Maitland Lutheran School to participate in Jumping Jelly Beans where we did some Easter crafts and went on a Easter Hunt. Thank you Paula and staff at MLS for inviting us, it was lots of FUN. Thursday we had a visit from Ben McNicholl a Hearing Special Educator. He came to teach us all about our ears. It was very interesting learning about how the ear works and learning some sign language.
We have also had Oliver’s mum Sallyann bring in a baby lamb and Paige’s mum Rebecca bring in some baby ducks; they were so cute!
What a fantastic few weeks we have had at our Early Learning Centre. We had our first visit to the library last Thursday where we had some time to read and look at the lovely children’s books and we even got to borrow two books each.
Mel read us a great book about making things with ‘loose parts’! We loved this book as it showed that with loose parts and your imagination you can create wonderful things. If you have any loose parts we could use in play for building and creating please let us know.
We also used our cooking skills to make some zucchini burgers with the zucchinis we grew in our very own kindy garden. With Jo we peeled, chopped and grated the veggies and herbs. Thank you to Hunter’s Mum Lisa for donating parsley and chives from their home garden too. The kids weren’t so sure about them but the staff thought they were very tasty.
Mat & story time
We have also been having lots of fun mat times and story times where we have been learning lots of new things. We have been focusing on learning our daily routines with Oscar Organised, recognising our names and counting using songs and stories just to name a few. We have been learning how to listen by following the 5 L’s of listening – legs still, hands in our lap, lips closed, looking at the person speaking and using our listening ears.
After lunch we have also been having relaxation time where we have been playing relaxing music and concentrating on deep breathing with bean bags on our bellies.
Most importantly though we have been doing lots of playing!.
Welcome to 2017 in our fantastic new Early Learning Centre! We hope you enjoyed the holidays and had a relaxing Christmas and New Year with your loved ones.
Firstly, I would like to introduce myself, my name is Kerry Richardson and I am the Head of Early Years at Central Yorke School. I will be overseeing the Early Years Preschool Education at both the Maitland and Point Pearce Campuses. I am really looking forward to getting to know all of the preschool children and their families.
Mel Richards is our Early Years Teacher who you all know well and Jo Rawlings and Tammy Wheaton are our Preschool SSO’s. We understand that there have been many changes and if you have any questions regarding Preschool please feel free to speak with one of us.
Term 1 program
Our Term 1 Preschool Program is focusing on building relationships with the children, creating a feeling of belonging in the centre and learning our centre routines.
Our first day of Kindy was great fun! We made an ocean in the water trough, we made some wonderful rose petal creations, we played in the sandpit, cooked in the new mud kitchen and made cakes, pizza and doughnuts with the playdough, just to name a few things. When we are playing we are learning lots!
The Children's Centre held their very first End of Year Celebration in the new building on Thursday. Mel thanked staff and parents for their help through the year, highlighting the way everyone had worked together to make the move from the old kindy so smooth. The children performed several entertaining Christmas songs then received their individual books highlighting their achievements throughout 2016. After a video showcasing the year's activities and events Chairperson Emma Mann also thanked staff and parents for their support. She presented Mel and Rachel, who leave at the end of the year, with gifts in appreciation for their dedication and work with the children. Afternoon tea was served then Father Christmas, (accompanied by the Maitland Police) made a surprise but welcome visit.
Through play based learning children have been engaged and exploring:
Children were introduced to the Maths Toolbox and have enjoyed using the variety of ‘tools’ in their play. They have particularly enjoyed using the tape measures, calculators and timers and have been creative in how they use them to support their exploration and investigation.
Children have been creating journals and drawing pictures about their favourite thing at the new Kindy. It’s not surprising that most of them are enjoying the ‘tap’ in the sandpit.
This week we will introduce our learning tub to explore children’s knowledge and interests around “What is a scientist?”
We will begin our child protection focus this week looking at Early Warning Signs.
You Can Do It
Oscar Organisation has been helping children revisit routines and learn where everything belongs in our new play space. We look forward to meeting Connie Confidence over the next few weeks.
It has been fantastic seeing children settle in and explore our new learning environment. We have received positive feedback about our Centre from both children and families as well as the wider community. The Children’s Centre received a lot of visitors as part of the recent MAS Open Day who were very impressed by our Centre.
We have had a successful start to the term and I look forward to an exciting and busy term. Once again thankyou to all of you for your ongoing support and understanding during this time of settling in.
Early years teaching and support staff attended a training session last week led by Yorke Peninsula Occupational Therapist Janine Burrows.
Janine talked about the 'building blocks for fine motor mastery' with attendees learning about the latest research in the area. Following this hands-on group activities offered opportunities for the practical application of new skills, techniques and ideas.
Letters have been sent out to families of children who are eligible to commence preschool in 2017. This is the ‘First Round of Preschool Offers’ and will only be sent to families who are in our catchment area. If you know of someone who has a child who will turning four before the 1st of May 2017, please have them contact us. It is not too late to enrol!
We have said goodbye to Amanda who has taken on a new role as an Early Childhood Leader and to Michelle who has moved from the district. I have been appointed as Acting Director for Terms 3 & 4.
We welcome Rachel Wells as our Preschool Teacher for the rest of the year. Rachel is building wonderful relationships with children and is enjoying getting to know them.