Director's Report August 2019

Director’s Report

16 August 2019

Anna Hutchings

 

Term Three is always a very busy time of the year, not only because we are gearing up for the Art Show, which is the Kindy’s biggest day, but also because of the way the children play and learn. They have been here for long enough that they are extremely comfortable with each other and the environment, they understand their responsibilities, their social skills have developed a great deal and they are ready for extended, rich play in collaboration with others. Our job at this time of the year is to provide interesting provocations and resources, to try and spark more complex thinking and skill development.

 

Because the children are feeling so confident at Kindy, we have observed many instances of children teaching each other skills. How to join boxes together to make a car that has 10 wheels and reversible lasers. How to make coloured mixtures by grating chalk and combining it with water. How to make an alien house out of plasticine to create an alien village.  Peer to peer teaching and learning is an incredibly effective way to acquire skills, often more effective than learning from a teacher.  It has the additional benefit of building the self-esteem and confidence of the child passing on their knowledge and skills, and this is something that we strongly encourage between children.

 

We have introduced new tools to expand the children’s experience and learning of practical skills.  The children relish the opportunity to use real tools, and so we have been using sewing needles, saws, hammers and nails, screwdrivers, palm drills, and even the electric drill in meaningful and purposeful ways. Our Father’s Day present this year has required an array of different tools and methods – the children are very much looking forward to presenting their dads with the gift that they made from scratch. We have also been exploring pulley systems and we are working on the idea of making a zip line – this one is requiring a lot of thinking from both children and teachers.  We have also been pulling things apart, like electronic games that no longer work, keyboards and typewriters, to see what is inside and find out how they might work.  We are always encouraging the children to be curious, to ask questions and to try to solve problems.

 

We have recently been selecting books for group story time that feature characters experiencing a range of emotions. As we read the story together, we stop to notice facial expressions on the characters – what are they feeling now? Why might they be feeling sad right now? These are questions that we ask the children during story time. The ability to recognise and label feelings is a key social skill. Being able to read how another person is feeling and respond appropriately enables getting along with others. Being able to identity our own feelings enables us to understand what makes us happy, sad or anxious, and helps us, over time, to learn to regulate our emotions.  The Kindy children have shown great interest in analysing and discussing the expressions and feelings of book characters and have shared sometimes surprisingly insightful reasoning. So that’s emotional literacy – in terms of language literacy the children are loving playing rhyming games and making up spontaneous rhymes throughout the day. Rhyming is a key element of early literacy development - rhymes teach children that words are composed of consistent sounds that can be played with to make other words - some real and some silly! And the silly is the fun part.

 

Thank you’s:

 

Thank you to our working bee team for keeping the Kindy neat and tidy.

 

To our committee for securing us the $1200 Rotary grant which we will put towards Bush Kindy resources, the Shell grant which we will put towards new home corner resources, and the Grill’d donations jar which we would love to put towards either some new books or a climbing wall.

 

To Adam and crew for modifying our fence near the climbing tree.

 

Thank you to our families for interesting donations of upcycleable junk.

 

To our staff for going hard at Art Show preparation!

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Red Group Report August 2019

We have nine new friends at Red Group this Term and a new assistant teacher.  Welcome to all the new children and their families and welcome to our kindy teaching staff Cristina.  All the new children have settled in well at Red Group and have explored most of the kindy environment and all that it has to offer.  Cristina has quickly become an integral part of the group and the children love having three teachers.

 

It is amazing to think that in a little over five months all the Red Group children will be at Kindy, in Blue or Yellow group with their amazing teacher Anna to guide them.  As I reflect on the last six months I am amazed at the changes in the children since starting pre-kindy.  Their ability to share with and socialize with each other has improved greatly, with some already making strong friendships. The complexity of their play, especially imaginative play has increased also. 

 

Most children have adjusted to the routines and structure of the pre-kindy afternoon, which will help them prepare for big kindy next year.  There are a multitude of benefits for the children who attend pre-kindy at Chapel Hill and I know the timing can be tricky for some families, but the positive outcomes make it all worthwhile.

 

So far this Term the Red Group children have been:  cooking up feasts and feeding the babies in home corner, painting- a lot, climbing the ladder tree, riding the “horse”, building with blocks, enjoying story time and singing, having a go at tricky puzzles, putting on puppet shows, swinging, dressing up… and I could go on for pages.  Please feel free to have a look through all the amazing photos on the Ipad or flip through the pages of our Red Group Big Book to see what we do each week.

 

Mat time at Red Group gives us the opportunity to come together at the end of our session and share music and stories together.  The time spent on the mat fluctuates each day, depending on how long the tidy up takes. Most of the children come running to the mat as soon as we start our gathering song, eager to join in with their friends.

 

With the imminent arrival of Fathers Day and Art Show, the children will be making surprise gifts for their daddies and creating beautiful works of art for the Art Show in September.  Just a note for parents, in case you were wondering why so few paintings have been coming home, we have been putting aside some art for the Art Show, so we can showcase Red Groups finest creations. 

 

Phoebe, Cristina and I are looking forward to the rest of Term Three with your wonderful children and we would love some parents or grandparents to join us on Roster to share the fun with your child and us.

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Chapel Hill Kindy's brand new Cubby House

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Thanks to the talented craftsmanship and generosity of the wonderful teachers and students from within the St Edmund’s College Manual Arts Department, Chapel Hill Kindy will be the home of a brand new freshly constructed Cubby House next year!

The Cubby House will fit in very nicely to the beautiful natural playground setting that is already enjoyed by the Children at Chapel Hill Kindy and we really thank St Edmund’s College, so very much, for providing us with this fantastic new addition!

We would also like to express our gratitude to the ever-efficient Shane from Brown’s Delivery Service who did not hesitate to put up his hand, donating his time and service, to ensuring the Cubby houses pieces were delivered from St Edmund’s College to the Kindy itself, both quickly and professionally. A very big thank you shout out to Shane – we could not have done this without you!

https://www.brownsdeliveryservice.com/

Thank you McGrath Estate Agents

We got a wonderful surprise when we found out we would be the recipient of a $500 donation from the wonderful people at McGrath Estate Agents! Thank you very much Trent and Jill, and thank you to the mystery family who nominated us!

We plan to use the money to purchase a microscope to take with us on our Bush Kindy adventures!

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Enrol now for Pre-Kindy 2017

Are you looking for a Pre-Kindergarten place for your 3 year old child? Pre-Kindy is a wonderful opportunity for your child to experience a gentle introduction to the busy life of being a kindergartener.  For two afternoons every week, your child can come and play, sing, paint, create, make friends and explore in the beautiful natural environment at our outstanding kindergarten.

Our Pre-Kindergarten Groups run with two sessions per week from 3.15pm-4.45pm. Red Group runs Monday and Tuesday, while green group runs Wednesday and Thursday. The program is run by a fully qualified early childhood teacher and assistant and if you complete terms 3 and 4 of Pre-Kindy your child will be guaranteed a place in the 4 year old Kindy program the following year.

For enquiries, please contact the kindy office. Our office manager Lydia is there on a Tuesday and Thursday between 9.30am and 2.30pm and will happily answer any questions or organise a suitable time for you to come and view our beautiful kindy.

50 year celebrations - thank you!

Thank you to everyone who came to our 50 year celebration and community event on Sunday. It was a fantastic day. To our generous sponsors - Simons Gourmet Gallery, Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, Jindalee Pool and others, we could not have done it without your support!

To Julian Simmonds Councillor for Walter Taylor Ward, thank you for your support and coming on the day to unveil our sculpture.

To our amazing entertainment - Brett Campbell Children's Musician and Geckoes Wildlife Presentations, thank you - the children so enjoyed your shows.

To our artists, Suzi and Daniel, and our friends at the Cubberla-Witton Catchments Network, this would not have happened without your energy and guidance.

To our wonderful teachers - thank you for facilitating the excursion to Cubberla Creek and incorporating the water dragon into the children's learnings in term 4.

To the 2015 kindy children, thank you for contributing your amazing creativity to the tiles you each made. Thank you to past and present families who sponsored a tile. You have helped to create something beautiful for our community!

And last but most certainly not least, thank you to Yellow Group mum Julie Sanderson and her group of parent volunteers who made the day such a success. Julie worked tirelessly to make both the sculpture and celebration happen - we are so grateful and very thankful for your efforts.

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50th Anniversary Tiles Available Now

We would like to give you the opportunity to put your family's mark on our 50th anniversary sculpture. You can purchase a specially made tile that will sit alongside the children's fossils in a beautiful mosaic design on the water dragon sculpture. You can choose between a beautiful gum leaf glazed in rich organic colours, representing the beautiful habitat that surrounds the kindy grounds, or the concentric growth rings of a tree fused with an amber glass centre, representing growth, the past and the present. These photos give you an idea of what our artist Suzi will create this week.

You can purchase one tile for your family, or one tile for each of your family members that have attended our wonderful kindy!

Don't miss out, there's only 50 available. $25 each. Email chapelhillkindy50@gmail.com by 13 November.

 

Growth rings with fused glass centre sample (amber colour shown in background will be used in the 50th anniversary tiles)

Gum Leaf size and shape before glazing

Beautiful rich organic colours to glaze our gum leaves

50 Year Art Project Underway!

Blue, Red and Yellow groups have all made their amazing 'fossils' for our sandstone water dragon sculpture. Once they are glazed and fired, our artist Suzi will create a mosaic design on the sculpture. The children loved using the natural treasures they found down by the creek to make some incredible patterns. IMG_0785

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Calling all past families to be part of our celebrations as we mark 50 years

Chapel Hill Community Kindergarten is celebrating an amazing 50 years in our local community. To mark this incredible milestone, we are calling all past families to get in touch with us to be a part of the celebrations, including a major community art project of a water dragon sculpture, currently underway. Contact Julie at chapelhillkindy50@gmail.com or call 3378 2008.

Top playground renovations

We've done it. The new kindy playground is finished. And it looks AMAZING!

After a lot of planning and preparation, and an intense 2 weeks over the holidays, the new kindy playground and secret garden are ready for our children to explore and have fun in.

David Fearne has been the most brilliant project manner from beginning to end. We thank you for your valuable time and expertise, your patience and can-do attitude. You have given up many weekends and all of the school holidays, without you this project wouldn't have been possible and we cannot thank you enough. A massive thank you to Mark Johnson, Sam Jolly and Brent Litchwark for building the fabulous new bridges for the kids to run across and drive their trucks under. A huge thank you Steph Donigi for your work drawing up the original design and plans, and to everyone who gave up their holidays to help dig dirt, move rocks, lay drains and plant trees - David, Emily Lurje, Sandra Palmer, Steph Donigi, Vicki Hotston, Jo Hoban, Alan Hoban, Nick Clarke, Mike Cujes, Malcolm Crabtree, Anna's sister Emma and mum Roselyn, Michelle Wood and her son Noah, Siobhan Fletcher, Nick Bourne, Bev Proctor, Sarah MacKenzie, Jen Stanley, Bryony Barkhuizen and Anna Hutchings. Your help was invaluable. And lastly, a big thank you Bryony, Jen and Anna for all your work pulling the project together, organizing contractors and supplies and planting a never ending supply of plants. You are fab. I'm sure the kids know how lucky they are to belong to such a wonderful kindy community committed to making their kindy a better place. And they are going to have such a wonderful time in their new playground and secret garden. Thank you everyone!

Art Show 2015

Our amazing Art Show is over for another year! Thank you to everyone involved - our incredible teachers and parent volunteers who work so hard in setting up, mounting and hanging art works, everyone who baked goodies for the cupcake and cookie stall, our fundraising team volunteers for working on the stall, Red Group Assistant Phoebe and her piano accompanist mum Jenny for the lovely music and most of all, thank you to our wonderful children for their incredible creations. PHOTOS COURTESY OF SARAH MACKENZIE PHOTOGRAPHY

Art Show - This Saturday - 12 Sept

The Art Show is on this Saturday 12 September from 9am - 2pm. If you have never been to one of our Art Shows, prepare to be amazed! The Kindy will be transformed into a beautiful gallery showcasing the work our children have done throughout the year. There will also be a jazz band, cupcake and cookie stall and coffee van. All 3 groups have been working on creating 3 great canvases for a silent auction - please don’t forget to put your bids in the boxes provided. Everyone is welcome. Our children are so looking forward to showing off their beautiful creations!

Chapel Hill Community Kindergarten - EXCEEDING NATIONAL QUALITY STANDARDS

We are thrilled to announce that Chapel Hill Kindy achieved the best possible result following our triennial assessment visit in June - a level of “Exceeding” against each of the seven national quality standards. For this we can thank our teachers, staff, committee and parents for their diligence, dedication and passion in making our kindy wonderful, not just in the lead-up to our assessment, but every single day. To achieve this rating, our kindy was required to demonstrate that we exceed the national standards in four of the seven quality areas, and meet the standards in the other three. We achieved “exceeding” in all seven standards.

Kindy Co-directors Anna Hutchings and Kim Cujes said of the result, "Thank you to our amazing teaching team, committee and children for a wonderful result in our assessment. A special thanks to Michelle Arthy-Chan, Cheryl Nell and Sandra Palmer for their tireless efforts with all the supporting documentation. And a special thanks to our wonderful parents - Nicholas Bourne, Darren & Phillipa Guppy and Ben Garland who joined the additional working bee."

"We wish to acknowledge the dedicated teachers, parents and committees of past years who have ensured a strong tradition of quality play based learning in a unique and beautiful natural environment. Our excellent result is a reflection of our proud history."

"And last but certainly not least, big hugs and thank yous to our beautiful kindy children who inspired wonderful remarks from our assessor, and who inspire us everyday."

Congratulations everyone! It is official – our kindy really is exceptional.

Skills For School Information Evening

We have an upcoming event on Thursday 30th July at 7pm at Kindy. Sarah Broderick, an occupational therapist with 13 years experience will be discussing how the school curriculum now moves at a faster pace and what this means for our children. She will be providing relevant advice and practical strategies to help you support your child to prepare them for school.

The evening will cost $10 and the session will run for approximately an hour followed by time for questions.  For more information, please click on the link below.

Please RSVP to us at Kindy by Monday 27th July if you would like to attend.

Skills For School Information Evening Flyer

Open Day - Saturday 18 July

We are holding an Open Day on Saturday 18 July from 9am until 12pm for families who are interested in enrolling their children in our Kindergarten and Pre-Kindergarten programs in 2016 and beyond. This is a fantastic opportunity for families to come and get a feel for our Kindy and meet our wonderful staff. We will be accepting wait list applications on the day. (Please note there is a $20 fee to be paid with wait list applications.) There will be a cupcake stall so don't forget to bring your gold coins! We look forward to welcoming you to our beautiful Kindy.

Enrolments for 2016 - secure your spot on our wait list today!

Enrolments for Kindergarten in 2016 and beyond are open. Secure your spot on our waitlist now! For enquiries, please contact the kindy office on 3378 2008 or chapelhillkindy@optusnet.com.au Our office manager Cheryl is there on a Tuesday and Thursday between 9.30am and 2.30pm and will happily answer any questions or organise a suitable time for you to come and view our beautiful kindy.

Family Fun Day - This Saturday!

fun day 2015Less than 1 week to go until our Family Fun Day! Our annual Kindy Family Fun Day is on this Saturday 23rd May 2015 between 10am and 1pm. Highlights include a magician at 10:30am, jumping castle, balloons, games, face painting, cupcake stall and sausage sizzle.

We would also really appreciate any Lucky Dip prize donations to be left this week in the box at the sign-in desk.

For more information please see the noticeboard or contact one of the class reps.

We hope to see you there!