At Apples & Honey Preschool, we believe that there are many different ways of thinking, discovering and learning. We believe that children learn best through play within the context of meaningful and respectful relationships. As such, our daily program is structured around a combination of informal and formal experiences and interactions.
Each day, the educators use both indoor and outdoor environments to provide opportunities for the children to play, learn and explore.
Daily experiences available include construction, reading books, drawing, painting, play dough, puzzles, pretend play, sand play, water play, climbing, balancing, ball games and gardening.
Regular opportunities to cook are a highlight of the preschool week, especially on Fridays in preparation for the Jewish festival of Shabbat. The smell of fresh bread baking in the preschool kitchen is a particular delight for both children and teachers.
Music experiences are another highlight of the preschool week as the children come together to learn new songs and get their bodies moving.
From time-to-time, we arrange special experiences for the children. These are often linked to the current interests of the children, and build on learning experiences throughout the term. Recent examples include a bush walk in Beauchamp Park, a visit from the Willoughby Fire Brigade, and a visit from a past parent who works as a local beekeeper.
Annual events, festivals and celebrations
Throughout the year, we celebrate a range of cultural festivals. Because of our heritage, Jewish festivals take on special significance at Apples & Honey. We link these celebrations to other cultures and values that can be shared by all. We also love celebrating diverse cultural and special events such as Chinese New Year, Harmony Day, Mothers Day and Fathers Day. Families are also welcome to share and organise celebrations with the children, including birthdays, and other festivals and traditions.
Each Friday, the children have the opportunity to honour the Jewish festival of Shabbat. Rabbi Gary and Rabbi Nicole from North Shore Temple Emanuel come and visit, bringing songs and stories. This is a weekly highlight for many of the children (and the Rabbis too!).
The teachers at Apples & Honey Preschool keep daily records as they observe the children at play. These observations form the basis of future planning and programming, ensuring the experiences offered each week are suited to the specific needs and interests of the children in each group.
Work samples, drawings, paintings, photographs, and selected observations are collected by the educators throughout the year to build a portfolio representing your child’s experience at the preschool. Each portfolio demonstrates the progress a child makes over the course of a year, and also provides a beautiful keepsake for the children and their families.
Apples & Honey’s educational program is about providing the best experience possible for children in this exciting stage of their life. Our program is guided by the Early Years Learning Framework, and founded on sound early childhood educational research and practice. Our program takes into account the emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual growth of each child in our care, and is shaped around experiences that support children’s learning in a developmentally-appropriate way.
We recognise that high quality early childhood educational experiences can provide meaningful preparation for life after preschool. Our children are given daily opportunities to develop their skills as thinkers, problem solvers, and as contributing members of a learning community.
Literacy and numeracy learning is naturally integrated within our play-based program. Literacy skills are encouraged at every opportunity, including alphabet yoga, playing with words and enjoying stories at preschool. Similarly, numeracy learning abounds in daily experiences by modelling mathematics as a meaningful and logical way to understand and relate to materials, for example counting and measuring.
Preschool days also offer children daily practice with learning to cooperate and play with others. Teachers are always nearby to support children as they learn strategies to play, cooperate and collaborate with others.
Above all, we ensure the children are continually making steps forward with their learning about themselves, others, and the world, putting them in good stead for life within and beyond preschool.
Each day, your child will need to bring...
There are no specific bag requirements, although children should be able to recognise and open/close their own bag/backpack.
Children will need to bring their own morning tea, lunch, and drink bottle with water. We suggest that all food containers and packaging are easy to open/close by the children themselves.
For children staying after 4pm, we provide a nourishing afternoon tea such as fruit, hummus and crackers.
We strongly encourage children bring healthy snacks and lunch to preschool each day.
Our centre is completely NUT FREE. In addition, due to our positioning at North Shore Temple Emanuel, we have a STRICTLY VEGETARIAN food policy. Cheese and other milk products are acceptable. Here is a list of nutritious morning tea and lunch ideas for your child to enjoy. See: www.familyfoodworks.com.au/?p=1801
Please include a complete change of clothes, including spare underwear, just in case your child needs to change during the day.
A protective sun hat must be brought to school and worn every day when playing outside.
We have 30+ sunscreen available in both classrooms. We ask parents to help their child to apply sunscreen before, or on arrival, each day. We then provide sunscreen for children to re-apply before heading outdoors later in the day.
The younger children (3-4 years) have a rest time each day. Children are set up on individual beds. The preschool can provide you with information about the sheet set required for your child. We send your child’s sheet set home at the end of their week at preschool and ask that you clean them and return them on the first day your child returns in the following week.
The older children (4-5 years) have a quiet time each day after lunch and only require a towel or blanket to lie down on, if desired.