Our extended care program is an important aspect of our program, available to our 4 year old families. This program enables us to offer extra support and care for our working families after the core kindergarten program hours have finished.
During the pandemic, our Preschool remained open, which was especially important for our families who are essential workers. We had a two pronged approach to our 4 year old program during the lock down phase of COVID-19; where we offered face-to-face teaching paired with our online learning program.
Due to reduced face-to-face families attending our service during the lock down phase of COVID-19, we had to pause our extended care program. When restrictions eased and families began to return, we were excited and really happy to reopen our extended care program earlier than expected. It was important for us to ensure we could offer this program as our working families rely on this service.
The small group of children who returned were very relaxed and happy to be back in the calm and caring environment. We ensured we created a play based program to ease the children back into the long days. We know that play is vital for the healthy development and wellbeing of children and allows for intrinsic motivation and active engagement leading to joyous discovery. Play ensures that children build executive fuctioning skills and contributes to school readiness. Not only that, play has an enormous role in allowing children to feel relaxed and cope with stress. It also allows opportunities for children to be creative, problem solve, define their self confidence and develop self agency. All these skills are so essential in development, but even more so when adapting to changes like those experienced during the pandemic.
The families who use our service are so grateful to be able to continue their work commitments knowing that their children are safe, happy and that their wellbeing is at the forefront of our educators while in our care. We look forward to continuing this program for the remainder of the year.
Kym & Maddy x