September & October

This year has certainly gone fast, as we head into our last month of Spring!  You wouldn’t always think it was spring though, what with this very up and down weather we are having.

Again it has been a busy two months at Moa kids with the children and teachers have been super busy.  We have had a few preschool events over the last few months.  A big thank you to all the families that have supported these, we couldn’t do them without you.

The children, and also not to mention myself, had a fabulous time at the disco.  It was certainly a mini work out, with all the dancing, but great to see all the children and the fun they all had.  There were some great dance moves being shown off.  This is more of a community event than a fundraiser, but we still managed to raise nearly $600.  This is great!

Last week we had the annual second hand sale.  This again was super successful for Moa Kids, with the sun coming out for the day, I think a few may have been distracted to the beach, but we still managed to raise nearly $1,000.  So a huge thank you all the people who baked, helped on the stalls and gave their time for the sale.

Also, a big thank you to all the families that came to the parent evening last Monday night.  These are always very useful and I have had some great feedback. Next year I will look at getting one booked each term, so if there is anything that you would like to hear information on, please feel free to give me your ideas.

With Spring here, we have seen a lot more people start to consider childcare for their children.  So I have been delighted with the people considering Moa Kids. We have many show arounds and lots of new families starting; we wish a big Moa Kids welcome to you all.

Remembering that Moa Kids is a community based preschool, we a run by a committee, made up of parents.  Should any new families wish to join our committee or think you may have skills that would be an asset to our committee, please speak to either myself or Zoe.  If you would like to have a conversation on what it involves feel free to come and see me or Zoe as we would love to discuss this with you.

With Christmas just around the corner, it is that time of the year to sort out our children’s Christmas Party.  It won’t be long before we start practicing with the children.  The teachers have been asking the children what songs and ideas they would like to do this year, I must say my favourite request by far, has been from Eddie asking for the children to perform ‘’Thunder Struck’’ J  So it should be another fantastic show this year.  We will be having the children’s Christmas Party on Thursday 8th December at 4.30pm.  Again we will have it in the park by the playground, the children will put on their concert and then, like last year, families can set up for their picnic tea and we will have entertainment coming on at 5.15pm.  We will finish with our “Special Festive Visitor” and should be all wrapped up just after 6pm.  So make sure you pencil this in your diary and remember everyone is welcome, the more the merrier (we have many grandparents come along).

This year Moa kids will be closing for two weeks over the Christmas period.  We will be closing on Friday 23rd December at 3pm and reopening as normal on Monday 9th January 2017 at 8am.  Many families have mentioned that they will away for longer, this of course is absolutely fine; however you will need to let either myself or Zoe know your dates.

As we all know, Sharleen is pregnant and will be heading away on Maternity leave mid December.  I have started the process of replacing Sharleen through this time.  I will let you know as soon as we appoint someone.  They will be starting when we return on the 9th of January. 

The nursery seems to be filling up and lots of new families have started in there which is fantastic.  At this stage we don’t quite have enough children to hire another full time person in this room, but I will watch this carefully and Shay and I will continue to support in there when needed.  Also just letting you know, I will never put an unfamiliar causal in the nursery, we will always try our best to have familiar faces.

Over the last few weeks I have had a few parents come to me about their children not wanting to always come in to Moa kids.  They have mentioned there have been some children using silly words and not being the best of friends.  This of course is all part of preschool life, but I also do take this very seriously.  We want to make sure that all our friends have a pleasant experience when coming into to Moa Kids.  The teachers and I had a meeting on Tuesday to make sure we are all on the same page with this issue moving forward.  We will be doing lots of talking and role playing with the children at group times, on how to be a good friend and what to do when someone says things that are not very nice.  We will also look at our classroom guidelines/rules at Moa Kids.  The children are fantastic at these group times.  They all are very vocal at sharing their ideas and thoughts.  We have been also reading different stories to help and support this message.  So I just wanted to let you all know that I am aware of this and all the preschool teachers and children are working on respecting our friends and understanding what it means to be a good friend at Moa Kids.  It is a new mini focus in the preschool room so it is always good to carry on the same message at home.  Please make sure you ask the children questions about this, because hopefully soon they will be able to tell you all about it and what to do.  More importantly though, please let me know if you have any concerns or questions around this, as I am happy to help and like to get situations like this sorted as soon as possible J

Redcliff’s Primary school have had a final decision from the MoE regarding the location of their school and I am excited to hear that they are having a brand new school built on Redcliffs Park.  I wish them all the best on their return back into Redcliffs.

Enjoy the last month of Spring. Let’s hope that the weather picks up.

Thanks Hayley.

Welcome to our new families

We have a few new friends to welcome this month, a big welcome Ella, Logan, Marsali, Florence, Cormac, Connor, Hunter and Isla 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 and happy school days to Eric, Indie and Nicolas.  We wish them all the best with their next learning adventures at their new school J

Staff News

Sharon has returned from her big adventure. It is great to have her back.  Shay has been working closely with Sharon over the past few weeks.  Shay will now return back into the preschool room, but will continue to work closely with the nursery.

Ali has taken a well deserved break.  She has headed back to the UK to see family and will return back on Monday 21st November.  Ali’s daughter Kate, who has been a casual with us for the past year, has been a wonderful help over this time. Great news for Kate she has a full time job starting in a few weeks.  So we wish her all the best for this.

Letisha will be away on Monday 14th November through to the 17th.  She is heading away on her last section of her leadership course.

Tracy is off on a well deserved week’s holiday. She will be until Monday 14th November.

Reminders

  • We have all lost property items in the foyer in the washing basket.  There are clothes and also some containers that have been left behind.  Please make sure you have a good look through.  This also shows the importance of naming you child’s clothes
  • If you have any spare plastic bags. We would love to take them off your hands.
  • With spring now well underway we need to see sunhats in your child’s bags please.  Please ensure that you name your child’s hat.  We have found in the past that it is good to just a have a “preschool hat” that stays in your child’s bag all the time so that they don’t forget it!
  • We will need to start thinking about sunblock.  We will apply an accredited 50 spf cream after lunchtime but could you please make sure your child has suncream on before arriving at the centre.  Should your child need a special sunblock please bring a named tube/bottle in for the teachers to hold for your child.  We tend to have more water play out in the summer months too so extra changes of clothes are a must!

Governance Committee

Our Governance Committee meetings are held on the third Monday of every month at 7.30pm.  Our next meeting is being held on Monday 21st November at the centre.

Should you wish to become a member of the Governance Committee or the Incorporated Society please see Zoe for a form.

Nursery News

Over the past few months we have had lots of new friends start in the nursery.  So we have many children settling in and coming for visits. It great to see them all doing so well and taking life at Moa Kids in their stride.

The children have been enjoying lots of music and mat times.  The older children, namely Phoebe and Isaac, like to take part and show us all the actions and the younger children are enjoying the different songs and the excitement of what Sharon and Shay will pull out of the group time bag next!

We have introduced real cups and jugs to the children in the nursery.  Shay went to a professional development course a few months ago and wanted to try this with the nursery children at Moa Kids.  This is working really well. The children are mastering the pouring and drinking out of a cup, along with help from Shay and Sharon.

With new families coming into the centre. Lots of families talked about the fact they use white noise for sleep times at home.  Shay thought it would be great to investigate this and see if we could introduce it into our nursery sleep room.

Hayley visited a nursery a few months ago where they had started using it and it had doubled their children’s sleep times.  So Shay found some readings and we decided to talk to the families and give it a go.  We implemented this a couple of months ago and we are happy to report it is working really well and the children are more restful and happy when waking from their sleep.  We will continue to do this in the nursery and we have even now thought of introducing it into the preschool room for their sleep times.

With the warmer weather here, the children have been getting outside a lot more. Water play, sawdust, the sandpit and climbing have all been big interests with the children as well.

Preschool News

The children’s community project has recently come to an end.  The children learnt so much from this project and all really enjoyed getting out into our local community to see what was out there.

They even managed to get a few last trips in.  A big thank you to Kate Bryce for allowing the children to head down to their physio rooms and do a Pilates class with the children.  They were all so excited when they came back.  It’s also great for Emily and Noah to show their friends where their mums work.

The second group of children got to head on their trip to the Redcliff’s library.  They all enjoyed the story session.  A big thank you to Charlie’s Aunty for allowing this to happen.

Another group of children were very lucky to head along to the Redcliffs Primary School production ‘’The Lion King’’.  All of the children and teachers couldn’t talk highly enough of the production.  Our children made us very proud and sat so well during the production which was over an hour long.  It was great to see all our ex pupils doing us proud on the stage too.

A big thank you to Redcliff’s New World who have donated a whole set of the little gardens to us.  The children really enjoyed being involved with making these up and most of the plants have sprouted.  The children are enjoying watering and taking care of the plants, this of course is all happening under the watchful eye of Tracy.

You may have also seen we have some new family members/pets in our preschool room.  A big thank you to Brendon and his family for letting us look after their blue tongue lizards in the week.  The children constantly hang out at their tank looking at them and asking different questions.  This is a fantastic experience for the children.

The children’s new project has been on bugs/mini beasts.  This seems to be going well and has continued to move forward.  We were very lucky to have Pete, an educationist from the City Council, come and visit us to talk all about worms and worm farms.  The children were lucky enough to make their own and he even gave us some great tips on our own worm farm we have here at Moa Kids.

The children have been on many bug hunts in the garden.  The teachers are often finding buckets and spades everywhere around the bushes and gardens, so we know the children are still really interested in the different insects they are finding and enjoy working out what they are.

The children are also enjoying the new beetle display.  These are a fantastic resource and the children and teachers are finding it fascinating to have a close look at them.  The teachers have started up many discussions with the children around them.  The beetle display is in the science display box, so please makes sure you go have a look next time you are in.

The children and teachers are all excited to have Shay back in the preschool.  Even though she was just next door the children certainly did miss her.

Dolphin Club News

We have been learning all about bugs in Dolphin Club.  Firstly, we all headed on the bus to the Eastgate Library to get some different books out on bugs.

The children have taken a huge interest in this project and have been learning lots of different things about bugs and the world they live in.

We leant all about different insects and spider bodies and how they are different too. 

Bug life has taken over the dramatic play corner as well.  The children are enjoying acting out being different bugs and insects.

The children have also learnt different songs; the spider in the web, Life Cycle of a butterfly and Pungawerewere.  You may have heard the children singing these at home?

The children then took an interest in the life cycle of the butterfly and then followed on the life cycle of the ladybird.  You may have seen all the bugs around the centre.  There have been lots of busy bees creating some interesting artwork.  We have paper mache spiders, butterflies and spider webs, with caterpillars and other different bugs made using the glue gun.

The children will continue with this project.  If you have any bug ideas or books about at home. Please make sure you bring them in.

What’s on?

Moa Kids Children’s Christmas Party

Thursday 8th December at 4.30pm

We will meet on the grass by the swings

Children’s corner

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

Hello everyone, it’s so lovely to be able to greet you all on the mornings that I work in the office.  I feel like all of the children are quite happy to come and have a chat with me when they arrive which makes my day.  It’s also nice to be asked to play, do puzzles or help the children in some way when I pop into the preschool room.  I love being greeted with lots of smiles and waves in the nursery, so thank you to all of my Moa Kids friends for keeping me smiling each day.

I would like to take some time to recognise all that the Moa Kids Governance Committee does for our awesome preschool.  They attend meetings each month, work really hard behind the scenes to make sure everything is working smoothly, running to budget, obtaining grants to buy new resources and also have a very close relationship with Hayley and the teaching staff.  Moa Kids wouldn’t be the place it is without this dedicated team working so diligently behind the scenes so thank you Jason, Jordana, Rachel, Fiona, Carly, Abi, Jude and Geraldine. 

We heard last week that Redcliffs School is relocating to Redcliffs Park with a brand new school being built!  Yay!! This is such an exciting opportunity for the Redcliffs community.  As you probably know, I already have 2 of my girls at Redcliffs School and they are so excited about this whole opportunity.  My 7 year old can’t wait to be able to walk her 2 younger sisters up the road when it opens as she will be 10 and nearly a grown up (according to her!).

I’ve nearly edited all of the photographs that I took while I was in the other week, so keep an eye out for your pack in the next few days.

Thanks again for all of your help with all of the fundraising we have done recently.  It is really appreciated by all of the Moa Kids Governance Committee, Teachers and Staff.

Lunchbox Ideas

Brown Rice Sushi

(Serves 4)

Ingredients

Brown rice sushi

1 cup(200 grams) brown short-grain rice
2 cups(500 millilitres) water
1 tbsp rice vinegar
3 sheets toasted nori (yaki-nori)
1 cucumber, seeded, cut into matchsticks
20g snow pea sprouts, trimmed
2 tbsp Japanese soy sauce

Sushi vinegar

2 tbsp rice vinegar
2 tsp white sugar
1/4 tsp fine salt

Chicken teriyaki

120 g chicken breast fillet, sliced thinly
2 tbsp teriyaki sauce
1 clove garlic, crushed
cooking oil spray

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, wash rice with cold water until water is almost clear.  Drain rice in strainer for at least 30 minutes.
  2. To make vinegar: combine all ingredients in a small jug.
  3. To make chicken teriyaki: in a small bowl, combine chicken, sauce and garlic.  Heat a small frying pan over high heat.  Spray with cooking oil spray for 1 second.  Cook chicken, stirring, until just cooked through.  Cool.
  4. In a medium saucepan, bring rice and the measured water to the boil, covered tightly.  Reduce heat; simmer, covered, for about 30 minutes or until the water is absorbed.  Remove from heat; stand, covered for 10 minutes.
  5. Spread rice into a large, non-metallic, flat-bottomed bowl (a wooden bowl is good for this).  Using a plastic spatula, repeatedly slice through rice at an angle to separate grains, gradually pouring in vinegar at the same time.
  6. Continue to slice the rice mixture with one hand; fan the rice with the other hand for about 5 minutes or until it is almost cool.  Cover rice with damp cloth to stop it drying out while making sushi.
  7. Add rice vinegar to a medium bowl of cold water. Place one nori sheet, shiny side down, lengthways across bamboo mat about 2cm from edge of mat closest to you.  Dip fingers of one hand into bowl of vinegared water, shake off excess; pick up a third of the rice, place across centre of nori sheet.
  8. Wet fingers again, then gently rake rice evenly over nori, leaving a 2cm strip on the far side of the nori uncovered.  Build up rice in front of uncovered strip to form a mound, to keep filling in place.
  9. Place a third of the cucumber, sprouts and chicken in a row across centre of rice, making sure the filling extends to both ends of the rice.
  10. Starting with edge closest to you, pick up mat using thumb and index fingers of both hands; use remaining fingers to hold filling in place as you roll mat away from you.  Roll forward, pressing gently but tightly, wrapping nori around rice and filling.
  11. Working quickly, repeat process to make a total of three rolls. Cut each roll into four pieces. Serve with soy sauce and wasabi, if desired.