Kindergarten days: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday
Kindergarten hours integrated with long day care: 8:30am–1:30pm
Rainbow children are strong, competent and capable individuals. The team, consisting of a kindergarten teacher and qualified educators, works collaboratively to develop a variety of experiences and learning opportunities for children to explore and ask the ‘big’ questions. How, what, why and when? are often heard throughout the day. Educators use these opportunities to expand the children’s knowledge base and skills.
Intentional teaching moments are also planned and incorporated into the educational programs allowing educators to bring in their knowledge and ideas to extend on childrens’ interests and to challenge their thinking even further. The children and educators gather together throughout the day for meetings to discuss what is happening in the program or any issues that need input from the children.
A magnificent Moreton Bay Fig tree, the oldest tree in Northcote, is at the centre of the kindergarten outdoor environment. Its branches span across the entire inclusive playground, providing wonderful shade for the children to play under. Children can run across the boardwalk, sit and play on the low dry stone wall or flex their muscles climbing the commando rope wall. The playground allows children of all abilities to play and explore. Children are encouraged to try something new, and they develop self-regulation skills through taking measured risks, such as jumping off the plank or climbing within safe boundaries. Taking measured risks the children develop resilience, confidence and persistence.
The outdoor environment is shared across the Rainbow and Kangaroos educational programs, allowing children to build relationships and social skills. This socialisation supports school readiness. Favourite tasks include caring for Poppy the rabbit and our three guinea pigs. Composting and worm farming also promote children’s connection to nature and the environment. The daily routine is flexible, with the educational program evolving every day in response to children’s needs and interests.