Our Preschool Area
Welcome to our Preschool area, where children are inspired and supported to grow to their full potential.
Welcome to the Preschool Area of Lilliput
Our Preschool area is a continuation of the philosophy and practices of our infant and toddler’s area. A homely atmosphere, where relationships are at the heart of everything we do. Relationships established on manaakitanga; kindness, aroha, respect, and compassion.
Our Preschool area caters for children aged two years to six years old. This age range is because we acknowledge that not all whānau want their children to start school at the same age. This gives our whānau opportunities and flexibility over when their child starts school.
Teachers With a High Level of Commitment
At Lilliput, we constantly have over 80% trained teachers, and more often than not we pride ourselves in having 100% trained teachers each day. Lilliput teachers experience the joy that comes from being with children. They are passionate about and dedicated to continually providing the best possible care and education to all children and whānau. Our teachers are committed to life-long learning, where they actively keep up to date with the latest research around best practices within early childhood and education. This results in our teaching practices and programme continually evolving to be the best we can make it. Our teachers collaborate with each other to ensure changes are relevant and purposeful, keeping the children’s best interests at the heart of all decisions. Lilliput is a happy and supportive place to work and provides not only our families but teachers with a home-away-from-home and in doing so we pride ourselves in low teacher turnover.
In the Preschool area, Noelia is the key teacher, who over time will become emotionally attuned to your child. She is responsible for the younger children’s nappy changes, toilet training, bottles, lunches and sleeping routines.
Having a key teacher is important for your child as well as you the parents / whānau, as it helps to build strong bonds as well as reciprocal and responsive relationships. As your child’s key teacher, Noelia will help your child feel confident, comfortable and secure in this new and exciting environment.
Starting at a centre can be daunting for whanau, it is important that you have the opportunity to develop a trusting relationship with Noelia or the teacher your child has connected with. It is important that you feel confident discussing your child’s needs, wishes, and aspirations and that these are constantly being met. We acknowledge that sometimes your child will connect with another teacher, where this happens, we will support and foster this relationship by ensuring this teacher is available for your child.
At Lilliput all of our relationships are founded on manaakitanga (respect and kindness). The kaiako and whānau work together in partnership to ensure children’s innate eagerness to learn is nurtured and extended, and whānau hopes and aspirations are conceptualised.
We ensure we work collaboratively, collectively and colleguially with children, teachers, and whanau to ensure the best possible outcomes for all children. Authentic relationships are a huge part of our programme and we strive to develop robust relationships with children and their whanau, installing a sense of value, self-worth, acceptance, emphathy, and openness.
The teachers see themselves as partners in a child’s learning journey with the whanau being the most important people in their child’s life.
Our role is to support this relationship and to build open-communication with parents based on respect, kindness, acceptance, and collaboration. We listen intently to parents hopes and apirations and do our best to make these apart of our programme.
Child Initiated Learning
Our programme is flexible, ensuring children have plenty of time to explore and to excite their curiosity. We are committed to ensuring all children have endless possibilities to take charge of their own learning through play and robust relationships with people, places, and things. With this in mind we ensure that our programme is full of rich and complex opportunities, where they can explore and investigate their world around them, within a well-resourced environment. We hold a powerful image of all children, and know when they are provided with an environment and opportunities that build upon, supports, and nurtures their strengths and interests we are setting the foundations for successful life long learning.
Our commitment to life long learning is evident throughout all areas of our programme. We support our children to see themselves as capable and competent learners. Learners that discover how to be confident in taking risks, to tackle challenges and opportunities with optimism, and to be resourceful, and persistent. All children are born with an innate desire to learn, we harness this desire by encouraging children to ask questions, to persist with difficulty, to be resilient by learning from all experiences, to collaborate with others as a thoughtful team player, and by thinking imaginatively as well as in a discipline way.
We value the learning that happens naturally during play. Play provokes children’s senses, inspires their imagination and creativity, and stimulates an enquiring mind. Our teachers conscientiously and deliberately weave the curriculum areas naturally throughout our programme in meaningful and enjoyable ways. Children spontaneously explore and experiment with a wide variety of literacy, mathematics, science, and health and fitness throughout the day and are supported by teachers who authentically extend their learning and understanding. Fostering their curious minds to reach their full potential.
Growth and Development
Children Reaching Their Full Potential
Language is a huge and important part of our programme; language is the most complex skill a person can learn and is the foundation for thinking, learning, literacy, and development. During early childhood, language development happens best during play, as play consists of extensive language experiences, providing endless opportunities for complex language development. Through rich and complex language children’s brains are being wired for a complex world.
To encourage children to develop a strong oral base teachers naturally and thoughtfully expose children to an abundance of rich and meaningful language that enables children to become powerful communicators.
At Lilliput Preschool, we are excited about our ever-evolving natural environment, where the children have opportunities to be a part of the wonders of our natural world. Children are encouraged to become kaitiaki (care givers) of our land and take great pride in caring for our gardens, the worm farm, and the visiting birds and insects. The Boys College Soccer Field, which backs onto our Centre, provides the children with ample space to stretch their physical abilities and connect with our local area.
Infants and Toddlers to Preschool
Lilliput Preschool consists of two areas, the Infant and Toddler’s area and the Preschool area. Research states that secure relationships with trusted adults are crucial in the first few years of life. With this research we ensure that children and their whānau are guided and supported through all transitions. When a child starts at Lilliput or transitions from the Infant and Toddler’s area, we take our time, following the child’s lead, cues, and preferences.
We ensure a child has plenty of opportunities to visit the Preschool area, with their trusted adult (key teacher or whānau), where they start to build a relationship with Noelia or another teacher of their choice. Over time these visits become more frequent and for more sustained periods, and in doing so the relationship with their key teacher slowly deepens. It is vital that we follow the child’s lead, empowering them to stretch their social circle, take risks and to trust others.
In the Preschool area, we provide morning tea for all the children.
The children are involved in helping to bake and prepare morning tea, encouraging independence, confidence, and self-help skills, as well as other curriculum areas such as maths, literacy, and science.
Morning tea consists of either baking, toast, crackers, and wraps, accompanied with a variety of fruit.
In the sleep room, we have calm, relaxing music continuously playing in the background. Your child will have their own mattress which is located in the same place each time they sleep. This helps to develop a feeling of security and belonging, as your child knows their own special place for sleeping. When going to sleep, Noelia will support your child to go to bed in a caring and nuturing way, offering cuddles, following the routines they are use to at home. Noelia will stay in the sleep room with your child until they have drifted off to sleep, then they will be physically checked every 7 to 10 minutes.
Each child has their own portfolio at Lilliput. The portfolio will include regular learning stories that document your child’s interests, learning, and development. You are welcome to take your child’s portfolio home at any time to look through yourself or to show whānau and friends. Lilliput also uses an online portfolio system called Educa.
Through the Educa website, you and other whānau members (Grandparents, uncles, aunts, etc) can log on and access and your child’s learning stories. Educa also provides parents/whānau with an easy way to add feedback and comments. Feedback and comments about your child’s learning and development at home is always appreciated.