Your child and us

Get to know our early childhood program

We encourage you to become involved with and participate in the care of your child. You are invited to visit the service and stay for a play. Our educators and staff work together with you and your family for the mutual benefit of your child.

Enrolment process

Once you have chosen a child care service the next step is to enrol your child.

Personal/contact information

You will need to provide the service with the following information about your child and your family:

  • your child’s name and address and details of any special needs
  • information about yourself and any other parents, carers or guardians
  • details of the people who can pick up your child
  • information about your child’s medical health and immunisation status.

Things to remember in regards to enrolment:

  • Complete all enrolment details
  • Provide any custodial or medical documentation
  • Ensure you have registered with Centrelink. For more information refer to child financial support in our resources section
  • Ensure the service has current contact information for your family at all times
  • Contact the service if your child will be absent from care
  • Ensure the service has a current Medicare immunisation history for your child at all times
  • An enrolment fee is payable on acceptance of enrolment.

The next step will then be to start preparing yourself and your child for their first day.

Things to bring

There are a few general items your child might need when attending our early childhood services:

  • a bag to hold all their belongings                           
  • two to three changes of clothing (particularly if toilet training)
  • a wide brimmed hat
  • nappies (as required)
  • a small sheet or blanket for rest time in a sheet bag
  • food/drink sufficient for morning tea, lunchtime and afternoon tea as required.

Your educator will discuss with you what other things your child might need to bring on a daily basis.

Our education program

Our services offer an educational program and care environment that is inclusive and promotes competence, independent exploration and learning through play.

Our program is developed to:

  • be based on the knowledge of each child, so that the experiences, interactions and routines engaged in are relevant, respectful of their background and recognise and build on their current interests, needs and abilities
  • encourage children to express themselves and their opinions
  • allow children to undertake experiences that develop self-reliance and self-esteem
  • maintain their dignity and rights at all times
  • give children positive guidance and encouragement toward acceptable behaviour
  • consider family and cultural values, age, physical and intellectual development, and abilities of each child being educated and cared for by the service
  • provide opportunities for children to interact and develop respectful and positive relationships with each other and with educators/staff members at the service, and consider the size and dynamics of the groups being cared for.

The appropriate approved learning framework is used to design an educational program and make curriculum decisions to enhance each child’s learning and development.

Early Years Learning Framework

Early Years Learning Framework is used to enhance children’s learning from birth to five years of age. The framework describes the principles, practice and outcomes essential to support and enhance young children’s learning, as well as their transition to school. There is a strong emphasis on play-based learning and the importance of communication and language (including early literacy and numeracy) and social and emotional development.

My Time, Our Place—Framework for School Age Care in Australia

My Time, Our Place is used to enhance learning for school-aged children. It ensures school-aged children have opportunities to engage in leisure and play-based experiences that are responsive to their needs, interests and choices, and contribute fully to their ongoing development. It supports and provides guidance to educators working in long day care, family day care, and outside school hours care settings.

Queensland Kindergarten Learning Guideline

This guidelilne is used to enhance learning for our kindergarten program. It provides advice for planning, interacting with children, monitoring and assessing, and sharing information in kindergarten contexts

Play-based learning

The value of play

Children learn best when they’re having fun, and it is more likely that they will be having fun when they are playing. Their learning is optimal when they're free to learn at their own pace and in their own way.

There has been much research into the importance and value of play. It is now recognised as extending children’s mental capabilities, enabling them to build and rehearse social structures and skills, and developing their understanding of the world.

Play encourages:

  • New thinking and understanding
  • Problem solving through trial and error
  • Ability to negotiate and see others' points of view
  • Resilience
  • Ability to work with others
  • Mastery of new skills
  • Resourcefulness.

When children are able to choose what interests them and relate it to what they already know, they are more likely to become more confident and competent and better able to deal with the day-to-day challenges that confront them.

When children initiate play, it is often more inclusive since there is no requirement for them to play in the same way or to demonstrate the same outcome.

All our services incorporate play-based learning.

To find out more about the importance of play-based learning, read our blog Play is a necessity for children.

Nature-based play

When you think back to your own childhood, chances are some of your fondest memories are of outdoor places and activities. These memories might include climbing a tree, learning to turn cartwheels, playing tag with neighbourhood kids, having a picnic on the grass or visiting the beach. Children usually share the values of the important adults in their lives, so when we show an appreciation for the great outdoors, they follow our lead.

Unfortunately, this generation is spending more time indoors than any other in history and there have never been so many barriers to getting your child outdoors to play. Advances in technology and gadgets, more structured extra-curricular activities, increasing fear of stranger-danger, and worsening traffic concerns are all contributing. Sadly today, maximum security prisoners spend more time outside than the average Australian child.

However, our immediate world shapes the way children think, their attitudes and behaviours towards physical activity, the outdoors, relationships, adventure, risk, danger and challenge.  As parents and educators, we have a significant role to play. It is us who will help them establish healthy habits and lasting positive attitudes.

The importance of outdoor play

The outdoors is the very best place for young children to practice and master emerging physical skills, such as running, leaping, and jumping. It is also the most appropriate area for the practice of ball-handling skills like throwing, catching, and striking, along with manipulative skills like pushing a swing, pulling a wagon, and lifting and carrying movable objects.

Additionally, it is in the outdoors that children are likely to burn the most calories, which helps prevent obesity, a heart disease risk factor that has doubled in the past decade. The outdoor environment is also important for children because the natural light stimulates the pineal gland, the part of the brain that regulates the "biological clock" vital to the immune system and makes us feel happier.

Outdoor play contributes to learning

The outdoors offer more than just physical benefits as cognitive and social/emotional development are impacted, too. Outside, children are more likely to invent games and as they do, they're able to express themselves and learn about the world in their own way. They feel safe and in control, which promotes autonomy, decision-making, and organisational skills. Inventing rules for games (as young children like to do) promotes an understanding of why rules are necessary.

Learning to appreciate the outdoors

Children learn much through their senses. Outside there are many different and wonderful things for them to see (animals, birds, and green leafy plants), to hear (the wind rustling through the leaves, a robin's song), to smell (fragrant flowers and the rain-soaked ground), to touch (a fuzzy caterpillar or the bark of a tree), and even to taste (newly fallen snow or a raindrop on the tongue). Children who spend a lot of time acquiring their experiences through television and computers are using only two senses (hearing and seeing), which can seriously affect their perceptual abilities.

Finally, what better place than the outdoors for children to be loud, messy and boisterous? Outside, they can run and jump and yell, and expend some of the energy that is usually inappropriate – and even annoying – indoors.

Useful Links:

Raising happy healthy kids

“Let’s make the first seven years of a child’s life as healthy and positive as possible. Let’s avoid the unintentional damage of our greatest assets. Let’s get more informed. Let’s have more fun and laughter with our kids so that they can look back on childhood with a smile. Let’s allow our children more freedom and space to grow without trying to control them so much. Let’s get the love and bonding in place BEFORE the pressure of the world distracts us and them. Remembering that children are gifts and miracles and that being given a child to raise is a privilege of the highest order” (Maggie Dent: nurturing kids hearts and souls; p.16. 2005).

Day in the life of a child with us

What is a day like in our early childhood services?

  • When the children arrive they put their bags away in a designated place.
  • Children then choose what they would like to do, there are many activities for them to choose from.
  • Outside there is a grass and play area where the children love to run around, play on the fort, and test their skills on obstacle courses. There are swings, bikes, scooters and ball games for the children to enjoy.
  • Inside there are a variety of activities like building blocks, puzzles, writing area, book corner, home corner and board games. There is an art area where the children get creative with lots of painting, sculpting with clay and play dough and craft available
  • There are many other activities the children can enjoy such as dancing, drama and playing in a sandpit to dig, drive dump trucks, cook yummy mud pies or build huge volcanoes!
  • There is group time where the children can engage in fun and educational games, stories and songs.
  • The children are encouraged to eat healthy food and make healthy choices, such as yummy fruit for morning tea, and sandwiches for lunch and afternoon tea.
  • After lunch many children enjoy quiet activities or rest.
  • Most of the children after afternoon tea are ready for more play inside or outside before being collected by parents/guardians.

Frequently asked questions

What is the enrolment process?

As part of our enrolment process, you will need to provide all your child's details, your contact details, any custodial or medical documentation, and your child's current Medicare immunisation history. An enrolment fee is also payable on acceptance of enrolment. Your educator will be happy to discuss our enrolment process in more detail.

Click here for more details on our enrolment process

What shoud I bring?

Your educator will discuss with you what your child will need to bring on a daily basis. However, some general items may include:

  • a bag to hold all their belongings                         
  • two to three changes of clothing (particularly if toilet-training)
  • a wide-brimmed hat
  • nappies (as required)
  • a small sheet or blanket for rest time in a sheet bag
  • food/drink sufficient for morning tea, lunchtime and afternoon tea as required.

How much does it cost?

Our daily fees vary between services and how many days your child is in care. You may be eligible for government subsidies via Child Care Benefit (CCB) and the Child Care Rebate (CCR). This would make a difference to your fees. You can find more information at http://www.mychild.gov.au/.

To find out more about how and when to access child financial support, visit our resources page.

Your local service manager or educator will be happy to talk with you and provide more detail for your individual circumstances. Please use our 'Find a location' tool to find your local centre details.

 

Do I need to pay fees if my child is sick?

Your standard fee will still apply if your child is unexpectedly unable to attend for any reason, including illness. If eligible for child care benefits, your child will have 42 allowable absence days. For more information speak to the educator or service manager.

What is play-based learning?

All our early learning services incorporate play-based learning. Children learn through play, as they actively engage socially, emotionally, physically and intellectually with people, objects and ideas. Play occurs in both indoor and outdoor environments.

There has been much research into the importance and value of play. It is now recognised as extending children’s mental capabilities, enabling them to build and rehearse social structures and skills, and developing their understanding of the world. Play encourages new thinking and understanding, problem solving, negotiating, resilience and resourcefulness.

When children are able to choose what interests them and relate it to what they already know, they are more likely to become more confident and competent and better able to deal with the day-to-day challenges that confront them. Your service manager can tell you more.