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Cocoon May update Week 4 Term 2

We have had such a different start to our term; however, it's been inspiring to see the resilience children have shown in adapting to our new way of learning and developing new skills around communication and ICT.

Thank you to all the families who have engaged so positively with online learning. We understand that many of you are trying to juggle working from home, helping other children with home learning, and perhaps managing a host of other challenges. We want you to know that we are here to help and realise that your child will need your support to access our Continuous Learning Program. 

The learning is different for everyone, and the children's level of engagement varies each day. Please don't worry if you can't manage to access all the activities or are unable to share your child's learning every day. For our early learners, playis an essential way for them to learn, and we want you to have fun with the program and enjoy this particular time with your child. Our priority is the wellbeing and safety of both the children and their families, so let us know if we can support you in any way!

We are eager to personalise our program and incorporate your child's current interests. Keep in touch; we would love to hear about your family adventures and activities!

For those families who have needed to send their children into the centre, we thank you for your patience with our new drop off and pick up system as well as hygiene procedures and temperature checks. 

We have incorporated intentional teaching experiences focussed on:

  • Social distancing
  • Handwashing
  • Using our sleeve/elbow for coughing and sneezing
  • Understanding COVID 19

It is evident that you have all been working on this at home. We have seen some great handwashing and heard lots of children singing Happy Birthday in the bathroom!

We are working hard to ensure that the program is being kept consistent across both the online and onsite settings. Our educators in the centre are supporting the children to access videos, zoom sessions and learning engagements on Seesaw. 

 

Unit of Inquiry: Sharing the Planet

This term we have introduced our new Unit of Inquiry, Sharing the Planet. It has been wonderful to see both the children and families embracing our learning with enthusiasm and curiosity. This unit of inquiry is rich in learning opportunities and is already providing the children with many experiences that have taken them away from screens and out into the natural environment!

Central Idea:

We connect with our natural environment through our curiosities and explorations.

We began our new unit by exploring the concepts of connectionchange and environment, inquiring into the question: "What is nature?"

In our live groups and small groups in the ECC, we posed the question "What is nature?"

The children's responses reflected a range of interests and understandings, with many of these shared across the group. We used their answers to create a "word cloud" which reflected their prior knowledge and interests. This excellent tool provided us with a fantastic visual of the children's strongest interests and ideas and gave us some clear directions for our learning engagements and activities.


Building on our early discussions, we invited the children to do some exploring and collect some items of interest, sorting them into nature/not nature. This provided us with further information about the children's interests and curiosities, which included:

  •  The weather – wind, rain, sun, seasons
  • Trees
  • Animals and living creatures including insects

Our early inquires have focussed on the weather and trees. The children have loved investigating, predicting, creating and testing their ideas, having lots of fun exploring and inquiring into:

How the weather impacts our environment, us and other living creatures

  • ways to record the changing weather
  • predicting weather and weather forecasts
  • dressing up in clothes and sharing what we enjoyed doing in our favourite season (this was a very interactive live lesson!)
  • observing and drawing trees

Taking mindful nature walks, using all five senses to explore

Learner Profile: 

Appreciation:

Balanced:

In the weeks ahead, we will be investigating how people connect with nature and Country by continuing our exploration of First Peoples' Culture. This will tie in nicely with the upcoming Reconciliation Week which will be celebrated across Australia 27th May – 3rd June. The theme for this year's Reconciliation Week is very appropriate for the current situation, "In This Together."

We would like to wish all our wonderful Mums a fabulous Mother's Day. The children have enjoyed creating a range of lovely gifts and cards for their Mums, choosing the materials and activities that they were most interested in. Despite the restrictions in place, we hope that your special day finds you surrounded by love and happiness!


Stay safe and well, we look forward to hopefully seeing everyone back at school in the not too distant future!

With warmest wishes,

EMMA, RACHELLE, KELLIE, MILLY and LISA
Early Learning Centre – Minimbah Campus