The Eltham Child Care Cooperative (ECCC) building is owned by Nillumbik Shire Council and the childcare centre operates as a co-operative, with parent involvement actively encouraged. Children love the huge natural outdoor playground at ECCC.
We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation, Traditional Custodians of the
land on which Eltham Childcare Cooperative sits, and pay our respects to their Elders past and present. We extend that respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
We offer a warm, nurturing and calming atmosphere to enable each child to feel safe and secure, thus developing a sense of belonging.
We promote and encourage positive relationships to develop between children and educators offering ongoing comfort and reassurance.
The Ladybug Room caters to children’s individual needs and routines, allowing for overall flexibility. A program is implemented with various learning experiences to meet each child’s needs and interests where each child has the opportunity to freely explore stage/age-appropriate materials.
What does a typical day in the Ladybug Room look like?
Sleeps are given to children when they need them as suited to their individual needs and routines.
Breakfast is served to children between 7:30am - 8:15am
Indoor/Outdoor program based on children’s interest and room plan
Transition group time (singing & books)
Transition group time (songs and books)
BUMBLE BEE ROOM
The Bumble Bee Room offers an age-appropriate program that facilitates all areas of children’s development with stimulating learning experiences based on the children’s interests.
We offer flexibility within routines and transitions, developing children’s independence and self-help skills, establishing a positive sense of self worth.
We encourage children to freely express themselves within limits through a variety of natural and diverse materials.
We meet individual needs, ensuring a caring and inviting environment where each child has the opportunity to develop to their optimal potential and form positive relationships with educators and peers.
3-YEAR-OLD KINDER ROOM
Our 3-year-old Kinder Room caters for children ages 3 – 4 years. The room is lead by a Bachelor Qualified Kindergarten teacher. We offer a play-based curriculum with an Indoor/Outdoor program with the focus on developing children’s learning in all areas of growth. Your child’s learning and curiosity will be encouraged through experiences and activities, such as exploring the natural world, being exposed to new ideas and solving problems. Our program provides a wide range of excursions and incursions based on the children’s interest.
4-YEAR-OLD KINDER ROOM
In the 4 year old Kinder Room we provide a funded Kindergarten program, in a long day setting, for children aged between 4-6 years. We offer a play based, child-centred curriculum which is developed by a qualified Kinder teacher. We develop children’s learning in all areas of growth including cognitive, social and emotional, fine and gross motor skills, language, early literacy and numeracy, science and the arts.
The 4 year old Kinder Room curriculum follows the Early Years Learning Framework and the Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework. These frameworks, focus on the children’s strengths and interests, using photos and conversation to develop observations. ‘Learning stories’, which are our main form of documentation, which get filed into each child’s individual portfolio.
Our program provides an opportunity for all children to develop their independence, self-confidence and resilience in a secure and safe environment. This is where they can imagine, create and explore through a wide range of open-ended experiences and diverse materials.
We focus on developing skills to assist children and families with the transition to school. It is our goal in the Kindergarten Room, for our children to develop the skills through play and intentional teaching and to thrive when they get to school.
We also offer a range of incursions and excursions based on the children’s interests. These experiences can include sporting programs, yoga classes and music/dance sessions. Creating partnerships within the local community is important in our Kindergarten program with walks around Eltham, visits to the local Aged Care Home, story times at Eltham Library and more.
The babies’ yard is separate to the main yard and caters for babies and children 2 years and under. The yard runs along the train line and the children enjoy watching the trains go by as part of their daily routine.
Our yard features a large sandpit, cubby house, outdoor kitchen, book corner and a soft fall multipurpose grass area that is adaptable for a variety of setups including waterplay, riding bikes, climbing frames, running and ball play which is adjusted to the children’s needs and interests.
We run an indoor/outdoor program and adjust our outdoor set ups to reflect the weather conditions, with lots of water play during the warmer months. We have adequate sun protection during the warmer months with our two large rollout blinds and a pergola with sun protection.
During the cooler months we put on our coats, hats, waterproof coveralls and get outside to enjoy a run, ride bikes, climbing and sand play. Our feature is our herb and succulent garden that the children have access to and enjoy participating in caring for our plants. We have a wide variety of bird life that visits our yard all year round.
Our large outdoor yard is shared between the Blue, Purple and Kindergarten room. The environment offers an expansive outdoor area that includes a covered sandpit, timber cubby house, tricycles & paved riding track, play & swing equipment all situated on natural tan bark amongst native trees & shrubs.
Children's enjoy growing their own vegetables & herbs that can be used in the Centre's kitchen. Our Sensory garden has been created to provide children with a quieter space within the yard to encourage inclusive practices.
The outdoor experiences are incorporated into each room’s indoor/outdoor program and focus on developing children’s gross motor skills, hand-eye coordination and spatial awareness across all ages.
GETTING BACK TO NATURE
At Eltham Child Care Cooperative, we are keen to embrace this approach and as such we have implemented a 'Back to Nature Week' each month.
The educators are constantly thinking through new ideas, games and activities to get the children engaged and develop our children's knowledge, skills and wellbeing of the environment.
Both yards are stripped of artificial toys and enhanced with natural elements. Families help with donations of logs and branches, stepping logs both large and small, pine cones, leaves, gumnuts, any natural resources.