November & December 2016

Whooooooooooooooo who would have thought that the end of the year would come around this quick?  It is crazy to think this is the last newsletter I will be writing for 2016!

What a fantastic year we have had at Moa kids.  My first full calendar year here is under my belt and the time is just whizzing by.

Before I start to inform you on all the exciting things that have been happening at Moa kids, I would just like to take this time to say thank all the families for their continued effort, help and overall support throughout 2016.  We couldn’t run a committee based centre without you all.  So a BIG thank-you J

With Moa kids being a community preschool.  We are run by a parent committee.  I also just want to say thank you to Jason, Jordana, Rachel, Abi, Fiona, Jude, Carly, Geraldine and Zoe, for all you time, effort and support that you give to me and the teaching team throughout the year.  I know personally I would be lost without you all.  So thanks!

Thank you to all the families that came along to the parent evening about nutrition for under fives held at the end of October.  We had some wonderful feedback and it was good to see many familiar faces there.  Next year it is going to be my aim to have a parent evening each term.  If anyone would like to share some ideas on what parents would like to see at parent evenings or have a specific person or topic you would like to see, please let me know.  Remembering we are a community based centre, so when we do have parent’s evenings, feel free to invite friends and people in the wider community.

You may have noticed the preschool and nursery room are continuing to fill up with new children and families which means we are very busy on certain days now.  At Moa kids, we like to be flexible for parents and families and their normally is no issue with changing days or times.  However with the numbers being busy on certain days, can you please make sure you give us a call to ensure we have space for your child before just bringing them in?  This also relates to if your child is going to coming in early or staying later, just so we know and we can staff to the numbers we are expecting.  

Over the last few weeks, I have had a few parents ask about the safety of our trees in our playground. As a centre we do playground checks every morning, this is part of our regulations from the Ministry of Education.

This includes looking at the trees and our wider outdoor environment.  I also called the council and have had a tree specialist come out from Treetech and check the trees.  They trimmed a couple of branches for us, but overall are happy with the trees in our playground.

This is a perfect example, if you have any concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to come and see me, as I like to keep on top of this sort of thing and sometimes it just takes a minute to explain our policies.

Earlier this week you would have received our parent survey.  I personally feel communication and feedback is the key to making sure we continue to provide families and children in our centre with the highest quality care and education.  It gives me goals for myself and my teaching team for 2017 and also lets us have feedback on what we have implemented this year.  It will only take a few minutes to complete and I would really appreciate it if all families can complete one and return it to the centre as soon as you are able.

You may have seen Moa Kids two minutes, or should I say 10 seconds, in the spotlight on One News a few weeks ago.  The Redcliff’s library let us be a part of moving the books from the old library at the tennis courts to the new library in the centre of the village. The children and teachers had a wonderful time doing this.  The lovely ladies at the library were so impressed with our little helpers too.  So a big thank you to the Redcliff’s library for letting us be a part of such a great community event. 

Last week was our annual Christmas concert and party. I was very happy that the rain stayed away for the time it was on.  If only the seagulls got that memo to.  The preschool children practiced their concert every day for a few weeks.  They were so excited on Thursday, the day had finally arrived.  It was great to see them all taking part and showing their families what wonderful actors and actress they all were. Thank you all for coming along, it was lovely evening and we have had some wonderful feedback.

On a final note. I hope you all have a well deserved break and a fabulous Christmas with your family and friends.  I look forward to completing another year at Moa Kids next year and working alongside all our fabulous children, parents, families, teachers and this wonderful community.

Thanks, Hayley.

Welcome to our new families

We have a few new friends to welcome this month, a big welcome to Jacob, Arthur, Paddy and Raife, who have all started over the past two months.  It’s great to have you all join the Moa Kids family.

Farewell

We have said goodbye to Noah this month.  His family have made the big move up to Auckland for a few years. We wish them all the best.

Staff News

Sharleen had her last day on Friday the 9th December.  We wish her all the best for the next few months and are looking forward to seeing what flavour she has.  We also hope she gets a few weeks of rest in before baby decides to enter into the world.  Good luck Sharleen, enjoy every second.

Hayley will be away on annual leave from Thursday 22nd of December. If you have questions, issues or need her, please make sure you come in before the 22nd.  Otherwise she will be back as normal on the 9th January

Zoe is taking a well deserved extra week over the Christmas break.  She will be back in ready to go on Monday the 16th.  Please see Hayley if there is anything you need from the office over this time.

With Sharleen on maternity leave until July, we have been busy finding her replacement for this time.  We are excited to let you know that Maria Woodlock will be starting in this position on Monday 23rd January.  Maria is an experienced Early Childhood Teacher and we look forward to her joining our team in January.

Last day of the year (23rd December) we are having a special treat.  Mr Whippy will be coming to the centre at 2pm. The cost is $2.50 for all preschool children and $3.00 for school children.

Reminders

  • At Moa kids we have a “nut” free zone.  Lately we have been noticing a lot of nut products coming into the centre especially cashews, almonds, peanut butter sandwiches etc.  Please can you remember that we are a nut free zone when you are making your child’s lunch.
  • We have displayed lost property out in the foyer on the drying rack.  There are clothes and also some containers on the bench that have been left behind.  Please make sure you have a good look through as these items will be donated to charity on the last day of the year.  This shows the importance of naming your child’s clothes.
  • If you have any spare plastic bags. We would love to take them off your hands.
  • With the warmer weather here, can all families please make sure your children have sun cream applied to them before arriving at Moa Kids?  All children also need to come with a named sun hat.  We tend to have more water play out in the summer months too, so an extra change of clothes are a must.
  • Are planning on being away over the Christmas holidays?  If so, please let Hayley or Zoe know your dates.  You can email or call us to let us know.
  • Just a quick reminder about the fruit basket.  Could all children please bring in one piece of fruit for the basket.  This is cut up and shared for morning kai amongst all the children.

Governance Committee

Jason, Jordana, Rachel, Jude, Fiona, Geraldine, Carly, Abi and Zoe would like to wish all of our Moa Kids families a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Our meetings will resume again in January.  Should you wish to become a member of the Governance Committee or the Incorporated Society please see Zoe or Hayley for a form.

Nursery News

The nursery is a lot busier now; it’s great to see all our new friends settling in really well.  Sharon has been back now for the last two months and has settled back in.  I’m sure if you asked her, she would say that it’s like she has never been away! Shay and Ali continue to support Sharon in the nursery along with myself.  If the numbers continue to grow like they are we will be looking to extending the staffing in the nursery in the near future, but we will let you know when that is happening.

Last week we had our own little Christmas get together.  Thank-you to all the families that came in.  This is always nice for families to meet each other and have a chance to have a good old catch-up with the ones who all ready do know.

We have been spending as much time outside as we can.  The children often go to the door in the mornings now, or go get their sun hat which clearly tells us that they are ready for their outside fun.  Messy play has been out a lot lately too, along with lots of water play.  These are great sensory experiences for the children and they have had a lot of fun experimenting and exploring with it all.

We hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and as always the nursery children will grow heaps over the two weeks.  We look forward to seeing you all in January.

Preschool News

You may have noticed our new “friends” at Moa Kids.   The science area is looking more exciting with the blue tongue lizards moving in.  Every day you will find the children over looking at their cage, to see what they are  up to.  They are great conversation starters with the children.  Tracy and the children have been researching  all about blue tongue lizards and there are some facts over where they are.  Again a big thank you to Scott (Brendon’s Dad) for letting us look after them in the week.  It was also very exciting for a few of our lucky children to see some baby blue tongue lizards being born a few weeks ago.  The babies are all at Scott’s place and are doing great.

The children’s latest project has been all about bugs.   This is slowly coming to an end.  On Monday a group of children from Dolphin Club and also some younger children heading along to the Discovery Centre at the Museum.  This is a great way to celebrate their learning on the bug project.

With the new Redcliffs Library building opening, the children were lucky enough to help out moving the books; they did so well and even starred on One News!  A few children will head down next week for a story time at the library.  With it being so close now, we are going to make the most of it and make sure we do regularly visits.

With Christmas just around the corner. Eddie mentioned to the teachers it would be a good idea to watch a Christmas movie.  We totally agree with him, so on Tuesday 20th December we are going to make it a pyjama and movie day for the children.  Please get your little one to dress in their pj’s and we will let the children watch a movie at some stage throughout the day.  

A couple of months ago, we had Pete, an Educator from the CCC come out and teach the children and teachers all about worms and worm farms.  We even got to make our own.  The worm farms are on the table in the foyer for you to collect – don’t worry there are no worms in them!!

Dolphin Club News

Dolphin club have been busy little bees finishing their bug project off.   Their work is displayed on the wall to the music room and also inside the project book.  Make sure you have a look.

Next week the children are off to the Discovery Centre and the Museum to celebrate what they have learnt.  The children are super excited for this trip.  We are looking forward to seeing all the bugs and I must say the children are very happy with the transport to the museum - the good old public bus!

Dolphin club takes a break over the holidays, but the children do all like to have that time to do different things so we will continue to support this.

The last few weeks have been all about Christmas, especially making sure we had all our costumes sorted for the concert.  The children were all wonderful and practiced so hard for this.  Congratulations to all of the children for an amazing effort.

What’s on?

Tuesday 20th December – pyjama & movie day.

Friday 23rd December @ 2pm – Mr Whippy! 

($2.50 for under 5’s and $3 for over 5’s)

Moa Kids will close at 3pm on Friday 23rd December.  We re-open at 8am on Monday 9th January 2017.

Children’s corner

A huge congratulations to Geraldine and Marc on the birth of their gorgeous little lady Ngaio Anne on 30th November, weighing 5lb 7oz.  Struan is a very proud big brother who will no doubt dote on his little sister.

Are you heading away over the holidays?  We love to hear about places that you and your children have been, especially exotic places or somewhere interesting.  If you have any photos and would like them displayed in our newsletter please let Zoe know.  Also, if there are any new siblings to our children we would love to share the happy news amongst our community.

Note from Zoe

Wow, weren’t our little people amazing at their Christmas Concert last week?  The acting was awesome, the singing was so beautiful and I’m so impressed that everyone remembered the actions to go along with the songs.  The children spent hours practicing the songs over the last few weeks which was a delight to listen to (and secretly watch!). 

It’s a great testament to our awesome teaching staff too; to be able to get preschoolers to have the confidence to take part in something like that is incredible.  I would like to thank Hayley, Letisha, Tracy, Shay, Sharon, Sharleen and Emily for everything they do at Moa Kids.  I love that Cassie gets to hang out with you all every week!

As Hayley mentioned I’m having an extra week off at Christmas.  Both my husband, Darren, and I are very heavily involved in various community organisations so we are hanging out to have some quality time camping and relaxing.  I have a couple of books to read and I’m hoping we can so somewhere without cellphone reception!!

I would like to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas.  Eat, drink, be merry, spend the time with loved ones but most of all, stay safe and make lots of memories.  I’m looking forward to seeing you all in January and hearing about your holidays.

Lunchbox Ideas

Chicken, cheese and corn rolls

(Serves 24)

Ingredients

500 g chicken mince
1 1/2 cup tasty cheese (grated)
1 carrot (grated)
1/4 cup breadcrumbs
1 egg
200 g corn kernels
1 tsp mixed herbs
1 pinch salt and pepper (to taste)
3 sheet puff pastry (partially thawed)
1 egg (extra, lightly beaten)
1/4 cup poppy seeds (*optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat your oven to 210oC (190oC fan-forced) and line two trays with baking paper.  
  2. Place the chicken mince, cheese, carrot, breadcrumbs, egg, corn kernels, mixed herbs and salt and pepper into a large bowl and mix to combine.
  3. Cut a sheet of pastry in half and brush one long side of each piece with a little of the lightly beaten egg mixture.  Place an even amount of the chicken, cheese and corn mixture in the centre of the pastry.
  4. Roll up the pastry to enclose the chicken mixture and cut into four pieces.
  5. Brush the tops of the sausage rolls with more of the beaten egg mixture and sprinkle with poppy seeds.  
  6. Repeat until you have used all of the chicken mixture and pastry.
  7. Place the baking trays into the oven to cook for 20-25 minutes or until the pastry is golden.