22nd August 2019
Point Cook Play & Learn Has an Exciting New Excursion Program
The team at Guardian Point Cook Play & Learn Early Learning Centre have recently relaunched their excursion program, which has been a huge hit with both the children and their families.
Educational Leader, Casey, shared details of the program, including where the children go, what planning is involved and some unexpected outcomes of the excursions.
“Our excursions were embedded into the service last year, and set the foundations for our relaunch this winter,” explains Casey.
“After organising the new Guardian permission forms and completing our risk assessments earlier in the year, we’re now getting out and connecting with the local community as often as we can.”
Casey explained that there was a lot of initial planning behind the scenes, but now that has been completed, the team have the freedom to go out whenever they choose.
“It’s actually been the perfect time to start excursions again, particularly with spring approaching. The children are noticing the seasonal changes to the environment, and how the flowers and trees are preparing for spring,” shares Casey.
All of the children participate in excursions, with the rooms going out into the local community up to three times a week. Locations include two nearby parks, supermarkets and the local aged care facility.
The kinder children also visit Stella Maris Catholic Primary School to work on the sustainability garden with the year five and six students, many of whom attended Point Cook Play & Learn as young children.
“Through our excursions we’ve developed a lot of wonderful relationships with members of our community, such as the students and faculty of Stella Maris,” says Casey.
“Our neighbours also drop recyclable items in for the children to repurpose, which they get really excited about. The children gift them vegetables from our gardens to say thanks. It’s really sweet.”
The children are active organisers in the excursions and genuinely enjoy getting out into their local community each week.
“The older children love bringing a cart out with them, so they can take balls to the park or collect fallen branches and leaves to take back to the centre,” shares Casey.
“For the younger children, we try to get their families involved as much as possible. We love going on walks as a group and pointing out different birds and trees.”
When asked about unexpected outcomes and experiences from the excursions, Casey shared a beautiful story.
“There’s a house that we walk past all the time, and one day the kinder children stopped in front of it and began asking questions about their statues,” explains Casey.
“They were determined to find out more, so they wrote a letter to the owners of the house and dropped it in their letterbox. We got a response not long after, and organised for the mother who lives there to come into the centre and answer their questions in person.”
Casey loves excursions, as they bring out the curiosity in the children, which then inspires the Educators to focus on the finer details they otherwise would’ve missed.