Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Newsletter - February 2017

February 2017
Term 1 2017
Older Group: 24th Jan – 12th April
Younger Group: 26th Jan – 13th April

Teachers’ Update
A big welcome back to 2017. Welcome to all our new families and to our children and whanau returning after the long holiday. We hope you all had a wonderful break with your children and we are looking forward to an action packed year ahead.
The term has started off busy as ever with us adding 14 new children to our roll in the first 2 weeks.
The focus for our younger group has been supporting the children to settle in and get to know the teaching team as well as the other children. This is also the time for them to learn about our routines and the way we do things here at Torbay Kindergarten. We have a strong focus on respect, respect for ourselves, each other, the environment and the wider community. This is something that we foster in all our children by supporting them to build and maintain respectful relationships and modelling what respect looks like through our interactions both with the other teachers, the children, families and visitors to the kindergarten.
Fostering Independence
One of the key skills that we encourage in our children is independence. This move towards independence can be supported in many ways through our program, and with the help of you our parents and extended whanau.
You can help by encouraging your child to walk in the gate independently and carry their own bag. This helps give them a sense of ownership and responsibility for their belongings. When they hang up their own bag they will always know where it is. When children choose a locker and hang up their bag they then take out their lunchbox and drink bottle and put them on the shelf. This quickly becomes part of the morning routine. By completing these tasks themselves they are fostering habits that will follow on to school.
Opportunites for developing independence are woven throughout the day at kindergarten, from putting on/taking off their own shoes, getting changed when they are wet and putting away their own belongings or things that they have made. Initially teachers support this process but as children develop these skills they move towards completing all of these tasks themselves.
These independence skills help in the transition to school as children arrive ready to learn rather than focusing on self help skills in their first few months at school.
Entrance Way
As you walk into kindergaten you will have noticed our wonderful new entrance way. This job was done by Ryan Hanna’s company RTH Building and Management Ltd (rthbuildingltd@gmail.com). It is fantastic to have a safer space to wait so that children and strollers can be off the footpath during our very busy times. Landscaping is on its way!

Sunblock and Hats
These are a must for Term 1. While we do have many shaded spaces at kindergarten and our new sunshades are working well it does get very hot here when there is no wind.
Please sunblock your child before they arrive at kindergarten.
Our Teaching Team
This year Rachel is studying for the year and has one release day per week. We are lucky enough to have Dale Gamby relieving for us on a Wednesday for the whole year. Jackie is also taking one days leave for the first term so Dale will be relieving on a Monday during this time.
Beach Explorers
Our Beach Explorer trips start again from next week for our Older Group. This term should bring us settled weather so we hope to run these every fortnight where possible. 
The children are all eagerly waiting for their turn. Don’t worry if your child hasn’t been yet, we only take the oldest children, usually in the term before they are due to go to school. Everyone will get a turn when the time is right. These trips have a real focus on caring for the environment and the role we have in looking after our Turangawaewae, our local standing place.
As we spend more time exploring our kindergarten pepeha (the way we introduce ourselves in Maori), the beach trips support our links to the land, to our maunga – Rangitoto, our moana – Waitemata and our awa – Deep Creek. As we wander along the beach we can see all of these special places and the children are naturally making these links.
Dates to Remember
Mon 6th Feb
Waitangi Day (holiday)
Wed 12 April
Last day of Term 1 (Older Group)
Thurs 13th April
Last day of Term 1 (Younger Group)
Donations and Fees
Since January 2015, all the fee payments are now passed on to our Head Office at NAKA. This money goes towards repairs and maintenance at an Association level.
The donation amount is now even more important to the kindergarten as we use this for all resources- consumables (paint, paper etc) and equipment (games, toys, furniture etc).
Invoices will be coming out over the next few days so please check your mail pocket or emails. Thank you for your on going support.
Again we would like to remind you to please not park any highsided vechicles in the parking spaces outside kindergarten. THIS IS VERY DANGEROUS. If you have a high-sided vehicle (this includes people movers, SUV’s and vans), please park on the road. We have had a few near misses when people are trying to back out of the car parks; they are unable to see the traffic coming down the hill.

We have reserved the right to park behind the teachers cars for families that have special needs. Please do not park there unless you have seen a teacher about this.

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