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Here is an update from each of our ELC teachers. As you can see, plenty of rich learning has happened for the children over the past few weeks.

Reception Sale Green Cygnets Group by Reception teacher Katie Whitfield:
Our Reception program supports and nurtures children through planned and spontaneous moments. This week we came together at group time and discussed a very important date coming up on the calendar, our ‘Stay & Play’ evening. We talked about coming to the ELC at night and taking our special grown-up/s inside and outside to play. We talked about how we could show them all our favourite things about the ELC. Of course, it was only fitting that we make some invitations. Educators assisted the children in their learning, explaining and demonstrating that when we decorated our invitations, it was important not to put glue and items on the letters and words on the paper, as this is what the families will “read with their eyes.” This was a lovely introduction to early literacy skills, showing the children that print means something and is a way we communicate. The children were very enthusiastic and proud to participate in this task.

Reception Sale Yellow Cygnet Group by Reception teacher Jess Love
Our Yellow Cygnets have been working their fingers, hands, and wrists at the start of each day while participating in finger gym (this is implemented within the program to help strengthen the little muscles in their hands and extend their fine motor skills.) This experience will help with writing in preparation for the formal years of schooling. The children have also been manipulating cinnamon-scented playdough and singing along to the song ‘If you're happy and you know it’. Our feather song encourages eye tracking as they blow the feather from their hand and watch it float to the floor.

White Swans Transition Group Sale by Transition teacher Kristy How
Throughout the first four weeks of the year, the children have been enjoying sustainable crafts with box construction and collage. To support this, we have created a recycling station for families to donate items. Each group has been preparing collage letters to display outside. In the White Swans, we used hessian scraps and matchsticks to cover letters for the sign. As the project develops, we see it is much more than just a recycling station. The children are developing their fine motor skills, persistence and stamina. At the same time, they are developing pride in their work as it is valued and put to real purpose. Further, children are creating positive connections to their families and communities. We look forward to engaging in rich discussions and learning about sustainability through our recycling station.

Black Swans Transition Group Sale by Transition teacher Danielle Carpenter
The sandpit is one of the Black Swan's favourite play spaces this year. We are lucky to have such a large sandpit that allows various play to take place. This week we have had baking in the kitchen, volcanoes erupting, a ute for travelling in, and children digging for treasure. The sandpit offers many skills and concepts to be discovered, reinforced and expanded. These include creativity, early maths concepts (number, capacity, volume, comparison), science concepts, fine motor development, hand-eye coordination, gross motor development (digging, scooping, pouring, pushing, lifting), language and vocabulary development, problem-solving and most importantly, social skills. As a teacher, observing children playing in the sandpit provides important observations to a child’s progress across all the developmental areas.

Bairnsdale Transition Group by relief Transition teacher Sommer Lea Collins
In the Transition group, the children have enjoyed participating in scissor skills activities over the past three weeks, working on developing their fine motor skills. This has become an ongoing interest within the group. After exploring counting and number recognition through small group games and songs, the children were encouraged to create work to represent their number understanding. The children worked independently to cut out the number of ducks to represent each number before pasting on the matching number. The children had a wonderful time singing number songs as they worked to complete the task.

Bairnsdale Reception Group by Reception teacher Sommer Lea Collins
In response to the children's ideas, the Reception group created a dress-up play space area, repurposing a mobile trolley with shelves. The children were encouraged to sort through and select dress-ups from our collection. The new space allowed the children to explore their interests and created new dramatic play situations and scenes. This has helped the children to connect with their new peers by recognising similar interests. It also creates opportunities to show patience, share and negotiate and experience small group imaginary play.

Lisa Burgess

ELC Director