Educational Program Our four age groups have individual activities, projects and intentional learning environments that are influenced by our center's philosophy, the National Regulations, ACECQA and the Early Years Learning Framework. The national regulations state that 'an educational program is to contribute to the following outcomes for each child': -the child will have a strong sense of identity. -the child will be connected with and contribute to his or her world. -the child will have a strong sense of wellbeing. -the child will be a confident and involved learner. -the child will be an effective communicator'.
Preschool Program ‘A preschool program’ (which can also be called an early childhood education program) is a structured, play based learning program, provided by a qualified teacher on a sessional basis. It is primarily aimed at children in the year or two before they commence full-time schooling, irrespective of the type of institution that provides the program or whether the program is government funded or privately provided’. Department of Education Program Outline: Our Transition to School Program aims to “Identify individual and group strengths, interests and goals in conjunction with the Framework’s Learning Outcomes” DEEWR 2010. Each project and experience (individual and group) looks at incorporating play based numeracy and literacy experiences, looking at how Science and Technology encourages children to explore their immediate environment and the world around them, Incorporating technology to extend on their interest and involves the children by asking open ended questions. The project process sees that children are competent and like to be involved and our educators all work towards encouraging team work and independence. All projects are documented and extended on.
Other programs which are available on request; Reading Eggs- ABC Reading Eggs provides the children with an educationally sound and highly enjoyable learn to read program that is not only fun and effective, but also easy to integrate into the children's daily routine. Ants in the apple- Learning to read and spell requires that children know the sounds of the letters of the alphabet and are able to match each alphabet sound to its corresponding letter symbol. The easiest way for children to make this connection is by using memory cues associated with songs and pictures. PreLit Program- PreLit is a skills-based, early literacy preparation program for preschool children in the year before school. It is a 12 Unit Course which is based on the delivery of 32 Picture Books. It is designed to complement a play-based learning environment and provides children with a sound foundation for learning to read. Early Learning Languages Australia (ELLA)- ELLA is a fun, digital, play-based language learning program for children in preschool. It consists of a series of apps for children to use on tablet devices that helps them become more comfortable with different languages early in life so that they can stay engaged with learning languages in later years. ELLA is funded by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training (the Department) and managed by Education Services Australia. Little Scientists- Little Scientists Australia is a not-for-profit professional development program for early childhood educators and teachers combining inquiry-based learning with age-appropriate STEM exploration (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths). The overarching goal of the Little Scientists STEM program is to improve access to high quality education for all children from an early age and to ensure the competitiveness of Australia’s workforce in the future.
Extracurricular activities Art classes with our educators. The children work on individual art pieces and group contributions that focus on a theme the children are interested in. Once the pieces are complete, parents and families are invited to our Art Exhibition where our environments have been set up by the children for the night. 'Ready Steady Go' is a fundamental sports program that runs twice per week that involves gross motor activities and games. 'Junior Jive' is a music and movement class which has a focus on rhythm, beat and movement. Each class is unique every week and has a specific focus. We host Junior Jive each alternate Monday and Friday.
Children's Portfolios Parents and carers are given two summaries per year outlining how their child has achieved the outcomes outlined in the national regulations throughout the year. Pictures of the child, work samples, the child's voice, interests, strengths, milestones and the family's involvement in the program highlight the individual child's development. This is what makes up your child's individual 'Summative Assessment'. 'The term summative describes assessment processes that ‘sum up’ what a child has learned by reviewing documentation gathered over time from a range of sources. These processes bring together information about what the child knows, understands and can do in relation to the Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) Learning Outcomes. Summative assessment differs from analyses of learning that occur for individual pieces of documentation such as: anecdotal records, photos or learning stories, as it involves reviewing a range of records in order to understand and document the ‘distance travelled’ by a child'. National Quality Standard
Newsletter Our newsletter is emailed to parents, highlighting the three groups': current interests, projects and the process, milestones, strengths, spontaneous learning experiences, upcoming events, our community involvement, our future plans for our environments and important notices for families.
Community involvement Our centre strives towards providing collaborative partnerships with families and communities. Although we are a privately owned centre, we have established close ties with our local library, primary schools and businesses. We also work towards assisting the Uniting Church with charity work and improving our surrounding environment. Respectful and supportive relationships with families are developed and maintained. Our families and communities are actively involved in our program and support our practices and centre philosophy. We have made and will continue to make contributions towards the Australian Literacy and Numeracy Foundation. 100% of the funds raised go to delivering literacy programs in Indigenous communities across the nation. Our recent spontaneous excursions which are called 'Nature Walks' have taken the centre by storm and are quite popular!
Parent Committee Families have opportunities to be involved in the service and contribute to service decisions. We welcome parents to join the committee where they will be able to work in partnership with our educators and children to make our place a better place. Sustainability Hilltop Kids believes in achieving sustainable practices within our service. Educators work in partnership with children and families to care for our environment, our surrounding suburb and help our local council work towards a better future.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
Quality improvement plan Our QIP is a work in progress that our educators and management use as a tool to self assess their performance in delivering quality education and care and to plan for future improvements. Our QIP is on display for families to view. Families are emailed progress notes and asked for feedback this in turn is workshopped, assessed and implemented by our educators. The collaborative partnership with families and the community is highly valued.