Guardian 101 Collins Street Build Strong Community Connections with Daily Excursions
Every day is an adventure at Guardian 101 Collins Street, with children and Educators setting out on daily excursions into the Melbourne CBD.
Assistant Manager, Soledad, shared the centre’s go-to locations, the benefits of running excursions every day, and the reasoning behind the popular program.
“We organise our excursions so that all the age groups get a chance to leave the centre each week. One day we might take the babies to the park, and the next, the kinder children to the museum or an art gallery,” explains Soledad.
Popular locations include the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne Museum, Carlton Gardens and Treasury Park, where the children go to explore the exhibits, have a picnic, play some games or visit the animals.
“Almost every Friday we go to our local fire brigade, which the children absolutely adore. They have a really lovely relationship with the firefighters who work there, and look forward to visiting each week,” shares Soledad.
“We also work with Binary, a cafe downstairs at 101 Collins, who we visit every week. The staff know the children really well and have made a lot of babyccinos for them.”
The excursion program has been a part of the curriculum at 101 Collins Street since the centre opened, as the team are passionate about the children being involved in the community.
“The children are as much a part of the community as we are as adults, so having our daily excursions has really strengthened their connection to their surroundings and the local businesses,” says Soledad.
It has also been valuable exposure for the centre as a whole, as many community members recognise the groups of children and Educators out and about.
“Families love the program and we’ve had a number of them come in for tours because they’ve seen us on excursions,” shares Soledad.
“It’s also great because some of the children live in apartments, so getting outside and having the space to run around is really exciting for them.”
Soledad is really proud of how coordinated the team is with organising daily excursions, and how well behaved the children are when they leave the centre.
“They’ve learnt how to behave when we’re on the street and interacting with traffic, as well as respecting the environment and interacting with people outside their immediate circle,” says Soledad.
The excursion program is particularly beneficial for the kinder children, as they often choose their locations based on what they’re working on at the time.
Learning about dinosaurs means a trip to the Melbourne Museum and investigating different modes of transport results in a visit to the local train station.
“The children are always really excited to get out of the centre for an excursion,” says Soledad.
“Whether it’s going to the local library for story time, or seeing the flowers in bloom at Carlton Gardens, we’re always learning from being in new environments.”
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