About Merewether Day Care

In Brief – what we offer
Operating 7.30am to 5:30pm weekdays
Educator picks up your child from your home
Pay only the gap as CCS paid directly to centre
Unique state of the art architectural facility
Set on a third of an acre of bush outdoor play
Excursions twice weekly for each group
Small groups of 4-8 children in each room
Highly qualified & experienced staff
Boutique centre with 20 children & 5 full time staff
Room resources completely changed each month
Latest research used in educational delivery using natural materials, loose parts play, forest schooling & Montessori sessions
School readiness starts here!

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Ages, Groups and Teachers
We take children from 6 months old and they leave us at the end of the year in which they turn 5 years of age. They are then ready for Primary School. Vacancies are filled giving preference to a child of the current cohorts age, to ensure they have peers as playmates, not necessarily in order of the waiting list.

Preschool 3-5 years: The children in the 3 – 5 year age group are with a highly qualified bachelor of Early Childhood teacher who is also qualified to teach at Primary School. We believe in small groups to ensure a much higher quality of care and education. Additionally, we have a highly qualified Montessori teacher who instructs small groups of children three times per week who has a honours degree.

Daycare 6 months – 3 years: Children are in two groups: 2-3 year olds and 6mths-2yrs. We have an extra educator to assist to assure quality care.

We don’t use untrained trainees to prop up our ratios or casual staff to replace staff off the floor when undertaking programing and documentation. We work with new parents to slowly integrate babies over 4 weeks. The integration program ensures parents and the child have a positive experience settling into daycare/preschool, building up from short dual visits gradually increasing times of separation towards building a strong bond with the other children in the group and the educator/teacher.

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Development & Educational Programs
The establishment of this unique centre is the result of the Director having been a Family Day Care Educator and mum, and later becoming a Primary School and High School teacher, then the Head of High School and finally a Lecturer with a Masters of Education and also a Masters of Management. With 25 years experience working with children and young adults, I know what children need to be successful adults. Thus, the focus with the children is on confidence, etiquette, compassion, rights/responsibilities, learning through fun and being prepared for ‘big school’. The key characteristic for a child to cope with life-learning is to instil in their early formative years of learning, confidence, a curious mind, and a willingness to persist.

“Play is the highest form of research” (Albert Einstein).

Although we take our base from watching a child at play that is just the beginning! We might watch a child for example pretending to be Tomas the Tank and so we can take him/her on a train ride which can involve a great deal of teaching and learning: reading (signs/timetables), writing (making tickets/list of what we need to take), numbers (paying for the trip), science (how motors work, maps – stops, electricity), art (pattern/design fabric on seats, billboards, logos, taking photos), music (songs related to trains), even botany/climate (seasonal flowers in gardens along the trip/plant these back at day care), manners (taking turns, waiting in a queue), construction, problem solving (examining how trains are made, making a Lego train, putting train tracks together back at the centre), drama (role playing excursion before and after), conservation (rubbish in bins/recycle), nutrition (selection of healthy morning tea options). Here learning is meaningful to the child and thus they are more likely to a) enjoy the process and b) understand things instead of just rote learning. We have a holistic approach to learning that start from a child’s interest, includes families input, and forms our intentional teaching in a dedicated educational program.

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Parent Information
We create a daily diary of your child’s little group and send this to you at lunch time so you can be part of your child’s day and link in to their day. Diaries indicate how the activity on that day is part of the Early Years Learning Framework developed for child care centres across Australia as a curriculum guide. Regular observations are sent to parents of their child’s progress and the program, which will give you ideas of what you can reinforce/play at home. A beautiful colourful Annual Portfolio of your child is printed each year and provides a treasured keep me sakes of your child’s early years. Monthly get togethers are arranged where you can catch up with other families, check on your child’s development milestones and/or learn about school readiness.

facilities

Child Psychology: Emotional and Social Wellbeing
Here children are treated with respect and their individuality is recognised and valued. We provide an environment reflecting qualities of consistency, harmony, affection, fairness, warmth and sensitivity. Behaviour management strategies that are used, guide children to recognise, manage and learn from their behaviours and express their emotions in positive, non-threatening and productive ways.

We believe in ensuring your child has a strong sense of belonging to the Merewether Day Care community. As part of this, each child is provided with their own roll out Pilanky (have your seen the advertisement on Channel 9 showcasing our centre and children using this high quality, individual bedding?) Children are also given a centre bag that is as individual as each child! Additionally, in the interests of not only adding to a sense of belonging but also caring for our planet, we don’t use paper towels but each child is provided with their own special hand towel to use in the bathroom. Lunch bags and containers are also provided as part of your starter package! We give that extra attention to detail that you’ll come to expect in this boutique centre that is unique in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie.

We all know it takes a village to raise a child and so the Merewether Day Care Community has social gathering to extend the child’s friendships outside of the centre. Many of our parents friendship circles for primary school have started here!

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Above Required Standards
Safety, good health and hygiene practices are priorities. This daycare/preschool has top quality facilities and equipment. Food and nutrition is based on university studies, Munch & Move. Annual toys and equipment budget is equivalent to many commercial day cares twice as big as this boutique facility. Half of the National Quality Standards elements we have been assessed as exceeding.

Vehicle
Children are picked up and delivered from your home in a VW Caddy and taken to the 1/3 acre grassland/gums, purpose built home away from home children’s paradise! We use these vehicles to take the children on excursions to places such as, the library, art gallery, café, watching tug boats, parks etc. This all helps create a memorable childhood for your child with their little friends and wonderful educator.

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Learning Activities

Musical instruments Gardening Dance Dog whispering
Painting Games at the Park Board games Theatre
Collage Art gallery visit Card games Movie and discussion
Etiquette games Concert Literacy Role playing
Meditation Story telling Numeracy Jigsaws
Sand moulds Dress ups Play gym Spatial games
Communication games Puppetry Playdough Craftwork
Cooking and table manners Outdoor picnic Block building Card making

 Merewether Day Care is part of an accredited scheme that allows government benefits and rebates.