OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH CHILDREN
We are the models
At Alderley Kindergarten our first principle is that children learn by example, and for them to learn to be caring, responsible human beings we must ourselves model the behaviour we expect from children.
Children must be treated with love and respect and should feel safe and protected at all times. As they grow and learn our role is to teach them that they are members of a community and that their actions and attitudes have an impact on others.
We believe that when children feel valued and listened to their self-esteem soars. Throughout the day as their choices are respected by educators and peers, they in turn learn to make responsible decisions and listen to and respect the choices of others.
We support children to take responsibility in every way, from the impact of their decisions on others to management of their belongings. This involves everything from tidying up toys at the end of the session to sharing daily tasks such as wiping over tables and sweeping up after lunch.
We understand that children are in the process of learning and developing both social and self-regulation skills. We teach them to identify emotions, how to cope with stress, and to play together with peers constructively. When children continue to struggle to manage a situation appropriately we take this as an opportunity to reteach the appropriate behaviour. Children may need to be reminded and supported in this way many times before it becomes automatic.
Rather than simply apply consequences for inappropriate behaviour we strive to find the reason for such behaviour – unless we do this the behaviour will always recur. Children need to be actively involved in the process of solving the problem themselves – in doing so they learn to self-reflect and voice their own concerns and therefore begin to identify and understand their own emotions.
Connection to community and the environment in which we live
We believe that for children to grow up into responsible members of the community, we must first teach them the importance of caring for and respecting those around them and the world they live in. When we do this we are laying the foundation for them to grow up with the understandings, skills and dispositions to be compassionate people and effective learners, able to sustainably contribute to their world and to enjoy rich and successful relationships with others.
Foundation for learning
We believe also that when interactions and relationships are respectful, nurturing and reciprocal the foundation for learning is established. We believe that children’s play should be freely chosen, personally directed and intrinsically motivated. We appreciate and embed the unique possibilities opened up by integrating modern technology in the early learning and teaching experience.
Competent and capable
We also believe that integral to the development of the whole child is the fostering of their emerging independence. Our aim is to support children to develop into competent, capable and resilient beings well able to deal with challenges they will face in the future.
Our educational, play based program is based on current best practice in early childhood, underpinned by the Early Years Learning Framework, which emphasises the importance of belonging, being and becoming and the Queensland Kindergarten Learning Guidelines.
We believe that children are naturally eager and curious to learn. They are confident in the most part about their own abilities, and have the ability to remain focused when motivation and interest are high.
We believe that children are capable of making their own choices about learning and that experiences should be rich and personally meaningful for them. The process of learning is what is important, not the product and children learn best through engaging in purposeful, focused play that is relevant to them.
Children enter the kindergarten setting with a diverse range of cultural backgrounds, ages, attitudes, skills and knowledge. Central to our educational program is the belief that everyone belongs, regardless of abilities, or cultural or family heritage.
In every way, every day we promote the message of inclusion. We do this through stories, music, learning experiences and in our daily interactions with children and with each other. We teach children to value individual differences, however emphasise to them that although we are all different in many ways, in many ways we are also the same. We encourage the enrolment of children with additional needs and value their involvement.
We firmly believe that all children should be familiar with the rich and complex history of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Australia, and that Indigenous people have the right for the true history of Australia to be told. We acknowledge the Turrbul people, the Traditional Custodians of the land on which Alderley Kindergarten stands.
We are in the enviable position at Alderley Kindergarten of retaining excellent staff for many years. Each of the Kindergarten’s two rooms are run by a tertiary qualified early childhood teacher and a qualified assistant who regularly attend professional development programs to further develop and extend their skills. Children enjoy the stability of the same teachers and the same group of children to interact with during their time at the Centre.
All staff hold a current Senior First Aid Certificate.
On a regular basis our teachers prepare a summary for parents outlining what has been happening in class, as well as where the program is headed.
Our teachers also work with families to compile a record of each individual child in a ‘child portfolio’. These include photographs, artworks, as well as anecdotal observations of each child. We find families treasure these personal records of their child’s time at the Centre.
Through these portfolios and individual interviews parents receive insight into their child’s progress and learning.
Throughout the year teachers provide additional interpretation of the curriculum via a variety of methods – handouts, newsletters, slideshows, power point presentations.
At the end of the year parents of children heading to Prep will be provided with a Transition Statement – a summary of a child’s progress during the kindergarten year, the purpose of which is to give parents insight into their child’s learning and development.
ADDITIONAL SERVICES: Incursions & Excursions
At least once per term the program is enriched and complemented by a variety of additional experiences, inclusive in the Kindergarten Fees:
- Visits by local Emergency Services including Fire Brigade, Police and Ambulance
- Interactive shows with specific themes that align to our program
- Interactive Science Experiences and visits from our local Bunnings team members to learn more about our worm farms
- Multicultural dance
- Excursions to nature based spaces such as the Botanic Gardens, Karawatha Forest or Lone Pine Sanctuary
- Educative Talks from Indigenous Arts and Performers
This list is subject to change and additional experiences are regularly organised. We strongly welcome contributions from parents and family members to further compliment the Kindergarten program.
PARENT INFORMATION EVENINGS
On such topics as ‘Get Set for Prep’, Supporting Children’s Emotional Regulation, Speech and Language Development, Health and Nutrition (or on other topics that parents may request).