We understand it can feel a little daunting when your child is heading off to a new preschool. In order to keep stress levels low, we have put together some information that might help.
If you can't find the answer you are looking for, or need more information, please get in touch. We are always happy to help!
What are your policies around health and safety?
Health and safety are a top priority at our centre, and our policies are continuously reinforced by our staff. These include (but are not limited to) regular safety checks of all equipment, identification of and mitigation of any hazards, the storage of chemicals and hazardous items in locked cupboards, and educating children on personal safety matters such as walking inside, staying seated while eating, not throwing equipment and encouraging respectful caring behaviour at all times.
At our centres we have at least one first aid trained staff member per 50 children onsite at all times.
How will you help my child settle in?
To make the transition as stress-free as possible, we usually have an orientation process where we schedule several short visits prior to your child starting his sessions, where you stay with your child as they familiarise themselves with the new environment.
Our teachers will work together with you to ensure your child has a great experience right from the start. During our orientation process, your child is shadowed by a teacher who will help familiarise your child with the routines and their new environment. In our Under 2 environment, each child is assigned a primary caregiver who is responsible for their settling in, parent induction, routines and individual development. We find that having a primary caregiver as a familiar point of contact helps to reduce stress and increase trust and a sense of belonging.
Once your child starts with us, feel free to contact the preschool at any time to find out how they are getting on – you might find this unnecessary once you see how much they love it here!
How can I make the goodbyes easier?
We have learnt from experience that it is best to have a regular routine for saying goodbye and discuss it with your child (if applicable) before arriving at the preschool. Some tips to make it a bit easier include:
- Talk to your child about the process you are going to follow before saying goodbye (for example, if it’s during the orientation period, explain you will complete a puzzle or read a story before you say goodbye).
- Keep the goodbye process short to minimise stress.
- Always let your child know you are going to leave but will be back later to pick them up. If your child gets upset at this point, we recommend sticking to your routine.
- Leave them with one of the teachers or some other children rather than just on their own
- Always leave as soon as you have said your goodbyes
- Crying is normal when you leave, however rest assured this usually stops soon afterwards as they get on with their day
- Children will pick up on your emotions about coming to the preschool. Make sure you have positive conversations about the preschool and always ask them how their day was when you pick them up.
What does my child need to bring with them each day?
We recommend packing the following named items:
- Two or three complete changes of clothes, including underwear and socks
- Sunhat in summer
- Warm hat in winter
- Appropriate footwear (such as indoor slippers or shoes especially if they are wearing gumboots to school)
- Nappies if applicable
- Their original Certificate of Immunisation and birth certificate or passport on their first day
What sort of food will my child be eating?
Our children love meal times thanks to our awesome in-house cook who creates healthy, delicious meals on a daily basis. We like to eat ‘family style’ so that the children learn to eat at a table and can perfect their table manners. Our menu runs on a monthly cycle - lunches are a cooked hot meal of red meat, fish, chicken or vegetarian with rice, pasta or potatoes. Morning and afternoon teas include a generous helping of fruit accompanied by toast or crackers with humus or cheese, homemade scones, yoghurt and a variety of savouries.
How do you communicate with parents?
We love to build close relationships with all our families and use an online tool called Storypark to share your child’s learning with you. We also create profile books for children to look through with their friends and family. These have extracts of the stories printed from your child’s online portfolio as well as samples of their work.
Staff and management are always available to discuss any matter regarding your child and preschool. We recommend that you make an appointment so that teachers can be available without interruption.
Do you participate in the 20 hours ECE scheme?
Yes, we do! Under this scheme if your child is aged 3, 4 or 5 they can receive subsidised care, up to 6 hours per day for a total of 20 hours per week. For more information, please get in touch.
Why should I choose a Little Earth Montessori Remuera preschool?
Studies show that a child’s early years are critical to their brain development and this development is influenced by the child’s experiences. The Montessori curriculum and learning environment is designed to enhance that development during those critical years and to support a child to become independent and to follow their interest. Children learn through hands-on activities that are made available to them in a carefully prepared environment. Children are free to choose and explore the activities that they are drawn to. The children in a Montessori classroom are of mixed aged. They are encouraged to be self-directed and the older children or children who have been in the environment longer can assist or become role models for the younger or newer children.
What do I need to do if my child is sick and can’t come into the preschool?
Please phone or email us to let us know (you can just leave a message if we are unable to answer the phone).
What happens if my child falls ill or has an accident at the preschool?
We will contact you and/or your child’s caregiver and an ambulance if necessary. We will care for your child until you or the ambulance arrives.
What are your policies around immunisation?
We respect parent/caregiver choice around immunisation. If your child is immunised, please provide their Plunket book on enrolment so that we can photocopy their immunisation chart. If you have chosen not to immunise your child, please let us know on enrolment, so that you can be notified if there is ever an infectious disease/illness in the preschool.