Month: January 2021

Beginning with Less

One of the biggest difference families notice when they begin their journey at Flinders is the “less” factor. Less resources, less colour, less displays, less stuff. At times, this can be surprising, challenging, or even shocking to those of us who are used to more. We live in a more culture, driven primarily by commercialism and economic imperative; earlier is better, more is better. Families ask us; what do my children do all day? They notice and comment on the lack of toys, or mention how spare the environments seem. All of this is intentional. Loris Malaguzzi once referred to the environment of the early childhood centre as an aquarium, reflecting the interests of the people who inhabit it. But the thing about authentic representation is that it is built on relationship. We can’t accurately reflect the lives and interests of the people who inhabit our spaces until we know about the people who inhabit our space. This takes time. It is hard, deep and vulnerable work, to begin to share our values with others. Working from a foundation of relationships requires educators to create a safe space for families and children, to listen carefully, to observe closely, and then to use this information to make informed decisions about what we provide in the physical and emotional environment. Research continually shows that learning in the early years is based on the quality of the relationships. When educators have strong, reciprocal relationships with children, they feel secure to explore and toRead more

A New Beginning

Welcome to 2021! We are looking forward to welcoming educators, children and families back for the start of the Flinders year. January at Flinders is a time of change – new families beginning, existing families transitioning to new buildings, and educators finding their feet as they navigate new buildings and relationships. At the beginning of each year, we ask two things from our families; patience, and courage. Patience, as we navigate a new space with new people. Patience, as we become familiar with you and your family. Patience, as we learn all about your child. Courage, as you bring your child to a new space with new people. Courage, as you say goodbye bravely and confidently. Courage, knowing that you have made a great choice by bringing your child to Flinders, and that they will be nurtured. We know how difficult transitions can be for families and children, even when these are cushioned by the stability that looping brings. We are here to provide the support and comfort that you and your child need as we navigate this transition together. For families who are new to Flinders, trust that we will get there, together. Last year we posted some tips for smoothing the transition for your child, and we share them again below; Sharing your positive thoughts about Flinders and the things your child might do Being brave Taking time to stay and play at pick up time, and making drop offs brief and kind Talking about children and educatorsRead more