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St Philip's Kindergarten: Rationale Statement

Visitors to our centre will immediately notice that we do not operate or function like a “standard” long day care centre. One difference is that we do not cater for toddlers or babies – hence we have no system of “Rooms”. Instead we have an “open plan’ physical environment which envelops two broad groups of children:  pre-preschoolers and the pre-schoolers. These two groups intermingle both indoors and outdoors for much of the day. However the morning groups are encouraged, offering age and developmentally appropriate activities, as the needs of the two groups are very different. There are short period throughout the day, which engage all children to participate. The purpose of these routines is to prepare children for the demand of school.

 

Therefore it is by design that we choose to operate like a “mini-school”. We have had volumes of feedback from parents who choose our centre because we have a slightly more structured approach to learning. We have curriculums for main areas of learning- mathematics, language, science & the environment, gross motor & music. We program to the children/families interest and what’s happening in our community.  

 

The focuses however are not rigid - can be and are altered, changed or abandoned as situations change and circumstances intervene. The focuses are carefully chosen to reflect children’s interests and needs, parent suggestions, weather, current events, etc and designed to promote continuity and balance –of subject matter. We aim to capitalise on the differing teaching styles of our staff with the result that every child will have multiple learning options. We do this within a framework of high quality care and with an emphasis on children making choices for themselves with minimal adult intervention. We are committed to the idea that children learn through play and so ample time is allocated each day to playing. Our routines are constructed to maximise the opportunities for highly individualised programs for each child’s physical Social, Emotional and intellectual well being.

 

With 80+ children enrolled at St Philips we have evolved a system of record keeping and goals-setting which reflects such a large body of pre-schoolers- we have modified our written records in accordance, with many different observation records such as daily diaries, individual child’s learning journey. Consequently we have a team of educators and assistants constantly making observations in writing and verbally, so that every child is observed thoroughly and regularly.

 

Our way of operating is under constant review, and new routines or approaches are willingly incorporated. Change is essential to maintaining a dynamic environment- our eclectic approach is summarised thus, We take the best and leave the rest.”

 

 

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