As Term 1 draws to an end, I’ve been looking back on photos and can honestly say this has been a wonderful term. The children settled in so well through transitions and orientations and we are so proud of everyone in Sun Room.
Throughout this newsletter we will have a look back at all our learning achievements, our discoveries and the fun times we have had together.
In Sun Room, it’s very important to us that your children feel that they belong. When children have positive experiences they develop an understanding of themselves as being significant and respected, and they gain that sense of belonging. This feeling creates an important foundation for their learning and development.
That’s why our curriculum is based on the child’s voice and their interests. We take what your child is interested in and make it fun, informative and engaging so they are learning through their play.
So let’s have a look at what we got up to this term....
This term we welcomed Adam.K, Amelia, Amy, Arielle, Chloe, Heidi, Nicholas, Ryan and Tristan.
And just recently we have been doing transitions from River room with Alannah, Athan, Ava, Charlie, Evie, Isabella, Keeyan and Rayna.
We have been blown away by the way these children have settled in. They are taking so much new information in, learning new routines, meeting new people. We are here to support, guide, comfort and just be with them. We want everyone to feel safe, secure and supported at all times as we know this leads to feelings of confidence and an overall sense of wellbeing.
We also welcomed Educator Viktoriya to our Sun Room team. We are so happy to have Viktoriya with us as she is enthusiastic, dedicated, passionate about children’s development and lots of fun!
And we said good bye to Aaron, Abigail and Leo as they set off to Forest Room to continue the next part of their learning journey at Haven. We will miss them but are so proud of how well they have settled in.
Chinese New Year...
It’s the year of the Ox!
Chinese New Year, also known as Lunar New Year or Spring Festival, is China’s most important Festival. It’s a time for families to be together.
We are very lucky to have Lina as an Educator in our room. She shared so much of her knowledge with us. She was able to talk to the children in Chinese, we practiced counting from 1-5 in Mandarin, we sang songs and danced to Chinese music. We painted Lanterns, explored our Chinese themed sensory tray and we made delicious dumplings and spring rolls together with help from Lainie.
Under the sea...
Throughout January so many of our families were having holidays or day trips to the beach. So we added experiences to help extend this learning. We had sand dough, water play with sea creatures, a fishing game, ocean play dough, boats and sea creatures, sand painting, sand tracing and we sang Baby Shark quite a few times!
This is another illustration of how we follow children’s interests and scaffold their learning in a fun and creative way.
In Sun Room we have been exploring our emotions and expressing how we feel by looking into a mirror.
Through this experience we are able to focus on our feelings and emotions. What do I look like when I’m happy? What do I look like when I’m sad? Talking about how we feel through play helps children learn, develop and recognise what they are feeling and how we can express, practice and work through these feelings together.
We turned the children’s photos of this experience into a lovely book which the children really enjoy looking at.
Morning Group Times...
This term we have introduced a new Hello song called “Hello to you”
It’s an upbeat, fun song that really loosens up the children and gets them motivated to start their day!
During this group time we also sing our Acknowledgment of Country, our Days of the Week, we sing from 1-10 in Chinese and we have been talking about being SunSmart and what that means to us.
Exploring different parts of our world....
As you know, as part of Lainie’s Little Chefs we are taking an adventure around the world. We started in Australia, headed to China, moved on to Ireland and right now we are exploring Greece. This has been an amazing way to give the children hands on experience in learning about different cultures and traditions. We are also matching this journey of cooking with engaging inquiry based experiences, songs and stories.
Cultural Diversity.... Everyone Belongs
We have explored several indigenous stories this term including “Welcome to Country”, “Big Rain Coming” and “I love me”
Indigenous culture is embedded into our daily practice and we are enjoying exploring what this means to us.
We celebrated Harmony Day, National Close the Gap Day, St.Patrick’s Day, The Festival of Holi and International Day of Happiness.
And, that was in one fortnight...thats a lot of learning...so we keep it pretty basic but still allowing the strong themes to come through of acceptance, acknowledgement, respect and understanding.
Self help skills and independence...
We all know this is the age when we get the comments “l can do it!”
Maybe things take a bit longer but how awesome is it when you see that sense of pride on a child’s face! To show them we trust and believe in their abilities. We are working on independence and self help skills continuously. From putting their water bottle in the trolley, to being responsible for clearing their plate, washing their hands, taking off their shoes, putting their jumper in their locker... the more we do, the better we are. In Sun Room, our hope is for your child to gain confidence in their ability to try new things and build their self esteem and pride in their independence. Of course, we take into account what each individual child is capable of and build from there.
Gardening and Sustainability...
We are very fortunate in Sun Room to have Bethany who is very knowledgeable and passionate about gardening and sustainability.
As a group, she will be sharing her ideas and helping us try new things.
Gardening can provide children with hands on learning opportunities while increasing environmental awareness and vital experience in problem solving.
Your children can learn new skills, have fun, play and develop self confidence by spending time in the garden tending plants and growing their own food.
Most children enjoy being outdoors and love digging in the soil, getting dirty, creating things and watching plants grow.
She is also introducing us to our worm farm. We are learning what worms can and can’t eat and how to look after them. A worm farm has many environmental benefits, including recycling food scraps, minimising food waste and creating natural garden fertiliser.
Reading is a safe way for children to learn how to express and think about their emotions. It also opens the doors to new ways to cope with emotional responses to change.
They will develop a higher self confidence in sharing feelings and emotions. Reading can spark your child’s imagination and stimulate their curiosity.
Reading enhances our language skills and develops fluency, allowing us to express our thoughts and ideas better.
We have a lovely reading space in Sun Room. You will often see the children sharing a story with an Educator or just relaxing on their own.
In Sun Room, exploring through sensory play experiences is one of our favourites. During these experiences we can comfortably play, create, investigate and explore.
In addition to these experiences being fun, interesting, and exciting they also enhance building nerve connections to the brain and encourage and enhance fine motor development.
This term we have explored play dough, sand dough, kinetic sand, sand, water, rice, slime, shaving cream, clay, water beads, sand painting and ice....
We had a lovely time celebrating Easter! We incorporated several learning experiences to help enhance our learning and prompt conversations about what Easter is all about. These experiences included our Easter sensory play, can you balance the Easter eggs and we added Easter eggs and Easter shapes to our play dough.
During group time we danced to “Hop little bunnies” which the children absolutely love and we read the story “We’re going on an Egg hunt”
To finish off our celebration the Easter Bunny came for a visit and we had lots of fun collecting Easter eggs together.
What’s happening in Term 2.....
We have a couple of things we are working on for Term 2.
Firstly, we are going to introduce our Positivity Tree to our morning group time. Basically, what this is, I’ve printed out several child friendly affirmations and we will hang them from the tree branches. We will choose a child each morning to pick an affirmation from the tree and then talk about what this means to us. These affirmations will include such things as “l am brave”, “l am kind”, “I am strong”, “l am helpful” “l am amazing”, “l take care of myself” and so on. What I love about this is that as an adult being positive or thinking good thoughts doesn’t always come easily. So what if we start this way of thinking from a young age. Our children can feel more capable and will be more willing and prepared to take on new challenges and accept learning opportunities with confidence.
Secondly, we are introducing two take home bears...yet to be named.
A bear will come home with your child for the week. We would love it if you took a few photos of their time together and jotted down what they got up to. We will then share this during our group time. It’s just another way to help your child feel special, confident, enhance their sharing abilities and give them a sense of responsibility as they look after the bear.
Thirdly, we are going to be doing a group project on birds. Our aim is to get to know the birds in our area, the birds of Australia and the birds of the world. We will take photos of birds and then recreate these birds through our art and craft experiences. We will look at nests, eggs, the bird life cycle and have stories and experiences to support this learning. We would love you to be a part of this too. If you have any photos or special stories about birds we would love you to share it with us. At the end of the term we will put it all together to make a special book, illustrating what we learned throughout the term.
- If you could please label your child’s belongings that would be so helpful. Especially water bottles!
- Please ensure you have several changes of clothes in your child’s bag.
- Feel free to bring in slippers over term 2. It’s nice to potter around in your slippers on a cold winter day. They can stay in Sun Room if it helps. The children will still wear their shoes for outdoor play.
- It will soon be that time of year to start bringing in coats, beanies and even gum boots. We feel outdoor play is so valuable that we will continue to be going out for a play during the cold weather.
- As always, we are here for you. If you ever need to chat or have a question or concern just give us a call or use conversations on Storypark. Of course we love a chat at drop offs and pick ups but if you need anything more just let us know.
- Thanks for an awesome Term 1, looking forward to all that Term 2 will bring.
Sun Room Team