At North Brighton Kindergarten we focus on developing strong community connections that give children and their families the opportunity to explore and contribute to our local community. The benefits are immense, and these local community experiences affirm children’s sense of belonging and their connection with the group.
We therefore encourage things like family involvement during kinder sessions by doing ‘kinder duty’, and a range of incursions and excursions.
Our 4 year old groups have been visiting Arcare, a local aged care facility, since 2015. These visits support the children to learn firsthand that doing something for others can help you feel good about yourself, and the walk there encourages children to develop a love and respect of our local environment. They also have lots of fun reading road signs and house numbers together, and learning about and practicing road safety.
In 2016 we started a relationship with St. Stephens community garden with a veggie plot maintained by Kinder families. Our children visit, water and harvest the crops, and can plant out any seedlings started in the NBK garden.
We have reciprocal visits with local primary schools including St. James and Elsternwick Primary, as the importance of the transition to school is widely acknowledged in national and international research. Children are best able to develop a positive attitude to starting school when they have opportunities to see the classrooms, talk about what it will be like, and are given realistic information about school experiences and expectations. Providing children with opportunities to visit a school setting with educators they already trust, peers and parent helpers is one way we support children’s positive transition to school.
North Brighton Kindergarten is a community kindergarten, and we aim to support each other and create a community of care and interest in our children. Being on Duty is a key activity that sets an example for the children about what voluntary participation looks like, helps the educators immensely by doing jobs like sorting out artwork and putting it into childrens pigeon holes, or supervising the pasting table for example.
Children love having a parent or guardian assist at Kindergarten. Parent duty rosters are placed in the foyer each term and we encourage parents, grandparents and guardians to help out twice a term for 3YO and 4YO groups.
Other ways you can contribute to NBK include:
Being a member of the Committee of Management (COM).
Helping to take the children on excursions.
Mending/sewing toys or smocks.
Washing smocks and dress-ups.
Reading stories, playing a musical instrument etc.
Collecting materials for collage and pasting – please do not throw out any interesting boxes, ribbons, wrapping paper or old clothes for dress ups
Participating in fundraising and social activities. Some fundraising activities are for specific major projects such as purchasing new playground equipment.
Participating in working bees.