Innovative Teaching Tools
Thrass® (Teaching, Handwriting, Reading & Spelling Skills) is a Phonetics Teaching-Tool that has made a paradigm shift in the teaching of English. It has a phonographic, multisensory focus, complemented by an analogous learning model that makes reading and spelling acquisition much simpler, faster and more sustainable than conventional ‘phonic’ approaches. As a classroom strategy THRASS® is fun, systematic, explicit and linguistically correct.
Kidz Galore implemented THRASS® in January 2016 as part of our Kindy programme at City West, Nedlands and Kyilla. The tool has been extremely successful in assisting the children with spelling and literacy to prepare them for when they commence school. For further information on THRASS® head to their website http://www.thrass.com.au/
Kidz Galore also implements the Early Learning Languages Australia (ELLA) program in our Kindy curriculum. ELLA is an innovative digital language learning tool which promotes children’s learning of different languages at an early age. ELLA introduces children to learning a new language via interactive tablet apps, which have been developed in consultation with experts in languages, early childhood and technology. It is an Australian Government initiative aimed at encouraging more students to learn languages in later years.
ELLA creates opportunities to enrich the children’s experience of language and culture in the apps through other activities such as cooking, stories or music, or inviting family and community members to share their cultures at the preschool. Our Kidz Galore Kindy children are currently learning French through the ELLA program.
Food and Nutrition
At Kidz Galore, we pride ourselves on providing children with a healthy food culture that encompasses all of the five senses. What the children see, hear, smell, touch and taste is paramount to their experiences with food. We recognise that nutrition plays an important role in a child’s development. Kidz Galore provides children with a nutritious diet based on Australian Dietary Guidelines for Children and Adolescents and Food Standards Australia and New Zealand.
We believe in using whole foods that are rich in nutrients and we minimise the use of refined or processed foods in our menus. A wide variety of nutritious foods are provided to children to enrich their exposure to a range of tastes, textures and smells. We believe that by providing a pleasant environment for children at mealtimes we encourage social interaction, learning and the development of positive eating behaviors. Children experience and develop a richer understanding of food and nutrition with joy and excitement. This helps to build a strong foundation for their future food harmony.
By participating in mealtimes with the children, educators encourage healthy eating patterns and positive attitudes towards food and health. All religious, cultural and health requirements are respected and accommodated. We also aim to support and provide adequately for children with food allergies or specific cultural practices.
All meals and snacks are prepared in a clean and hygienic environment and in accordance with current Health Department food handling and safety guidelines. Our menus are planned on a 6 week rotating summer and winter menu which are displayed on a weekly menu in the foyer. Progressive meal times allow children to make independent choices about when they eat. This encourages children to take ownership for their own wellbeing.
Meals offered are as follows:
- Breakfast (prior to 7.30am)
- Morning tea
- Afternoon tea
- Late snack
Sports/Physical Development Programme
At Kidz Galore we implement a physical development curriculum designed by a physiotherapist. Our outdoor curriculum caters for all ages and stages of children’s development. The children are given opportunities to take risks, engage with nature and participate in large and small group play. The outdoor curriculum has made play more valuable by furthering the children’s interests.
Regular physical activity in children builds strong hearts, muscles, bones, ligaments and tendons for healthy growth and development. It is also fundamental for developing fine motor skills, movement, balance, coordination, self-esteem and social skills. Children learn to use their bodies in a healthy way, manage stress and increase their own body awareness, self-expression and self-confidence.
Kidz Galore also recently introduced yoga into the children’s curriculum. Yoga assists in promoting physical strength and teaches children to use their muscles in new ways.The effects of yoga are calming and soothing in a child’s busy day and provides them with an avenue to ‘tune-out’ if they wish. Not only does yoga promote relaxation and meditation but it also helps the children improve their concentration, balance and flexibility.
Baby Sign Language
Baby signing is the use of signs and gestures to communicate with your baby. Through regular exposure to signs and gestures from their parents and carers, babies will learn to recognise the signs and associate them with specific objects and needs. Kidz Galore implemented Baby Sign Language as part of our curriculum in 2015.
Our educators were taught the fundamentals by Debbie Bundock, author of Signing Hands. Signing Hands classes were originally only for babies and were intended to aid communication until speech developed. However, it became clear after the first year that many parents wanted much more than this and so the toddler classes evolved.
Excursions and Incursions
At Kidz Galore, we believe that excursions are fundamental for child development and exploration. Children are becoming less visible in our communities and we would like to change that by providing the children with spontaneous excursion opportunities. Stepping outside the centre gate is not only an opportunity for your child to see the wider world but it can also expand your child’s concept of the world around them and their role in society.
While we believe that on-site experiences have their place, we also think excursions provide children with emergent learning opportunities and are a form of ‘social advocacy’. Excursions give the children an opportunity to respond to diversity — in the people they see, as well as the environments in which they are immersed. And they learn social skills that simply can’t be taught in the centre, about how to behave in different environments such as shopping centres, cafés, restaurants and libraries.
Activities include a variety of incursions and excursions ranging from:
An interactive science museum which includes a planetarium and various exhibitions
The aquarium of WA to learn about all the wonderful types of sea creatures
The WA Museum
The West Australian Museum to learn about different types of art and play with musical instruments
To go on nature walks and learn about our Australian outback
To understand sustainable living practices and worm farming
To explore our wonderful city
- City West is an amazing centre. Our son loves going and always returns home having learnt some new skill that day.