In our babies group 'Hug-a-Bubs', we believe in building strong, nurturing and trusting relationships with our children, so babies can feel safe, supported and secure. We acknowledge that while each child is unique, with different personalities, cultures, upbringing and abilities, that in an enviorment where children feel loved, respected and safe, children can feel secure and confident to explore, learn, be curious and develop a sense of self worth and belonging which is a vital foundation for developing a life long love of learning. Mary Ainsworth, an inspirational early childhood psychologist, demonstrated that a child who is securely attached to his/her caregiver will confidently, within close proximity of their caregiver, explore new learning environments and engage with new people. Our team understand how important this secure attachment is for early learning and we seek to:
Our educators are trained in Melbourne University's new '3a' (Abecedarian Approach Australia) which implements global best practice in early learning education.
In our 'Pip Squeaks' (early toddler) group we continue to focus on nurturing trusting loving relationships with each child, where children feel safe and secure to explore and learn. We recognise the importance of quality interactions with children in care, which are more than just cuddles but also involve getting down to the children’s level, asking questions about the children’s life outside the centre, engaging the children in open ended questions to ignite their curiosity and problem solving skills.
A core principle of our program is the belief that each child is a unique individual and can be a successful, competent and capable learner. In aspiring for the best learning outcomes for all children, we acknowledge that all children are intrinsically motivated to learn through play and we believe that our role as educators is to provide a caring, rich, supportive and responsive learning environment where children have choice to learn in their own way and at their own pace. To do this we focus strongly on strength based programming style, having high expectations of every child that attends the service, which acknowledges that learning is enhanced by leveraging children’s interests and strengths. High expectations from both early childhood professionals and parents can enhance children’s resilience, achievement, motivation and self-belief and extending on children’s strengths and celebrating success encourages children to be confident, involved learners.
In our 'Mini Minors' (late toddler / pre-kindergarten) room, we believe that each child's unique qualities bring life into the child care environment. This is why we celebrate individual differences of each child, their familiy and the wider community. Children continue to rapidly mature during this time, developing increasing autonomy and independence. Our team work closely with each child to promote their growth through a rich, warm and supportive learning environment filled with open-ended experiences, that promote their agency and sense of self. Such experiences, coupled with access to large nature-rich playgrounds allow children to just be themselves and learn at their own pace. Smartie Pant's vision is to foster ‘world ready’ children who are confident, creative, curious, independent, healthy and care deeply for others and the future of our planet. In our Mini Minor's room, we continue to support this by embedding into our programs activities that spark key developmental outcomes, as well nurture children's civic values, such as caring for our animals (our goats Betty and Beryl, our chicken Sharon and Puddles our duck) and caring for our community through sustainabie living practices like recycling, composting and growing our own fruits and vegetables.
Our Little Geniuses (3-4 year old) room offers a pre-kinder program that is provided by a Diploma Qualified Early Childhood Educator who is supported by a qualified early childhood educator.
We provide a nurturing environment as we continue to support children to develop their confidence, independence, sense of self and agency. We recognise that each child is unique in personality, their stage of development, culture, customs, values and abilities. We embrace this individuality and use it to create a learning environment that encourages children to capitalise on the individual strengths they bring to their learning. We do this by providing rich learning experiences that build on children’s current knowledge and culture in a warm and responsive environment to help them develop the skills and dispositions they need to become world-ready individuals.
Our programs focus on challenging children to extend their current knowledge and understanding. We achieve this by observing children individually to understand their specific needs. We use this information to develop programs that are responsive to these needs. As with the other rooms, our families are able to access and contribute to our observations and programs at any time using our online system, LIFT. As with all our rooms, we continue to focus on developing the pre-number, pre-reading, pre-writing and attentions skills children need to prepare for school.
We continue to engage children in the Abecedarian Approach (Abecedarian Approach Australia) as one of our teaching strategies. With a language and responsive teaching focus, this approach uses the three key teaching strategies of Enriched Caregiving, Conversational Reading and specific Learning Games to enhance learning.
We also provide a funded Kindergarten program delivered over a minimum of three sessions (15 hours) each week. This program is very special and is delivered by a university trained Early Childhood teacher, Michael.