Many of our Hobart Place families are local to the area and benefit from the new connections and friendships they make with each other when their child starts care.
For the children who move on to attend Illawong Public School or Tharawal Public School, they start school with many solid friendships made during their time at Hobart Place.
Many families return to our service when new siblings come along. Here is a sample of the feedback families share with us:
"Our eldest is due to start school next year and he has been so well looked after by his Educators over the past four years. Whilst there are lots of reasons why we love the centre, far and away the most important to us is that our children are happy. They love their Educators and can't wait to go each day."
"The Educators are lovely, warm and extremely helpful to both us as parents and even more so with the kids. They are very informing and they do take notice of everything which makes us as a parent feel safe and really happy to know our kids are in good hands."
"The educators are very caring and supportive of growth in the children and understand the kids needs very well. Our child always comes home very happy."
Our Hobart Place Educators are a diverse group who all bring something unique to the service. Their individual talents and specialties help to create a very engaging and dynamic learning curriculum:
Among our team is a sustainability devotee who shares her passion for environmental education and experiences with the children.
One of our Educators regularly shares her Chinese cultural heritage with the children, engaging them in new culinary experiences and cultural celebrations such as Chinese New Year.
We are also science enthusiasts, implementing the STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics) programs at Hobart Place.
One of our educators coordinates a children’s fitness program in the local community, and brings her knowledge and experience relating to healthy physician activity, fundamental movement skills and the NSW Department of Health’s Munch and Move program to our curriculum at Hobart Place.
Our Early Childhood Teachers possess a thorough knowledge of child development and an understanding of how children learn. One of our Educators is also a member of Council's Children's Services Curriculum Group which examines best practice curriculum planning for children in our services.
Above all, our Educators are warm, caring and compassionate. In the infants room (birth -3 years) they are highly regarded for their collaborative relationships with families and the secure attachments they build with the younger children.
At Hobart Place we value ongoing training for all of our Educators, to continuously develop their professional skills and capacity.
Family Communication & Partnerships
Hobart Place families enjoy regular insights into their child's learning via a safe and secure communication app called Educa. Educa allows families to view and share learning stories, photos and videos, and collaborate with Educators about their child’s development, from the comfort of their phone.
Our daily routine is flexible and promotes opportunities for siblings to spend time together throughout the day. Family groupings is a valued aspect of our service.
Location & Community
Hobart Place is located in a beautiful bush setting and is close to Illawong Public School and Illawong Shopping Village.
The children enjoy regular excursions encompassing interactive, cultural and educational experiences. We are regular visitors to the Menai Library and local shopping precinct.
The community also comes to Hobart Place. Council's Bush Care team are regular visitors, accompanying our Educators and the children on nature walks to learn about the local environment. The children particularly love these excursions among the local bush land setting.
Our outdoor spaces are large, picturesque, modern and well shaded.
Families value the spacious outdoors which feature:
- a bike track, complete with a designated 'petrol station' - the children love to pause and 'fill' their trikes before moving on.
- large shaded sandpit
- climbing and balancing equipment
- play equipment
- vegetable and herb garden
- well shaded areas for messy craft and play
- cubby houses
- a quiet space within the garden for children to enjoy
This large and well-resourced space is important for the children's holistic learning and development. Current research in early education and early brain development tells us young children learn best through hands-on active investigation and play. They grow, develop and learn best when they have access to well equipped outdoor play spaces.
Just some of the ways children benefit from our outdoor learning space includes:
- Lower stress levels and the ability to manage their emotions more constructively.
- Healthier brain development and healthier immune systems.
- Stronger physical motor skills, as children take supported risks through adventurous play which provokes them to climb, jump, roll, crawl, walk and run on a variety of terrains.
- Stronger creative problem solving skills which are vital to children’s cognitive development.
- Stronger social confidence, as the space provokes team work and group collaboration as well as imaginative play.
- Stronger small muscles in children’s hands and better grasp development which is crucial to developing their ability to draw and write.
Our indoor environment is large and bright, with designated learning areas to meet the children's current interests and milestones.
Activities include art/craft, creative and dramatic play, puzzles and problem solving, numeracy and literacy, and construction.
All Council Early Education Centres deliver a curriculum which provides children with academic and life skills education. We promote the development of language and literacy, numeracy, social and emotional skills, physical development and cognitive growth.
Many parents want to see their child write their name and hear them count and our curriculum provides children with the platform to develop these types of skills, along with many others.
Academic skills include literacy and numeracy concepts and learning experiences, for example:
- recognition of numbers, letters, shapes and colours (early numeracy and literacy skills)
- vocabulary expansion
- writing and drawing
- developing pencil grip and fine motor skills
- experimenting and hypothesising (early science)
Life skills focus on the following aspects of social and emotional skills development, including:
- emotional resilience (self regulating emotions, expressing emotions appropriately)
- self help skills (caring for belongings, tying shoelaces, putting on clothing such as socks and jumpers, encouraging independence)
- conflict resolution skills
- learning to share and take turns
- cooperating and collaborating with others
- learning to adapt to changes in routines
- knowing when and how to ask for assistance
- empathy and caring for others
- developing problem solving skills
- toileting independence
Education, including academic and life skills, occurs from the moment a child walks through our doors. Infants, toddlers and pre-schoolers experience age appropriate learning on a daily basis, encompassing:
- language and literacy
- mathematics and engineering
- science and technology
- arts and crafts
- sustainability education - learning about nature and the environment
- music and dance
- physical activity promoting gross and fine motor skills
- cultural experiences
- sensory experiences
- free creative play
- community excursions and engagement
The children learn through play and our Educators plan intentional, play-based learning experiences and investigations that incorporate children’s learning goals. For example, setting up a pretend play ‘restaurant’, complete with menus, cook books, notepads and money extends the children’s social, literacy and numeracy skills.
Like all Council centres, story and group time are an essential part of the daily program. These learnings and discussions build on the children's general knowledge by exploring their current interests and needs.
At Hobart Place we implement NSW Health's Munch & Move program, promoting children's fundamental movement skills (e.g.fine and gross motor skills), active play and healthy eating.
ELLA Language Program
Hobart Place has successfully gained entry to the Early Language Learning Australia Program (ELLA) - a fun, digital, play-based program for preschools to teach children a language other than English in their year before school. Hobart Place is introducing the centre's four and five year old children to Chinese Mandarin. The children are learning the language through apps. ELLA is part of the Australian Government's commitment to supporting language study in Australia.
We offer vision screening for four year old children, as part of their readiness for school.
Transition to School
We host Transition to School evenings at Hobart Place, allowing families and educators to collaborate with teachers at Illawong Public School regarding expectations for children starting primary school, school readiness learning areas, early intervention and the Best Start program.
We also offer regular excursions to the Kindergarten classrooms at Illawong Pubic School, to help familiarise the children with primary school routines and learning environments.
The children enjoy ‘lunch box days’ (to help little fingers master the skill of opening lunch boxes and containers) and school uniform dress up days at our centre. These role play and pretend play experiences include play areas with school uniforms, backpacks, lunchboxes, play food and writing materials for children to participate in.
We consult closely with parents on school readiness and transition to school. Every Council centre completes ‘Transition to School' statements for each child attending school the following year. These are shared with families and the child's school (with parent permission).
Free Cloth Nappy Service
All Council centres provide an eco-friendly cloth nappy service to babies and toddlers, at no additional cost to parents who use our service.
The modern cloth nappies are reusable and professionally laundered. The fabric, fit and comfort of the modern cloth nappies are a far cry from the cloth nappies our parents would remember.
Council's cloth nappy service has saved more than 5,000 kilograms which is equivalent to 5.1 tonnes of landfill in six months alone.
Care routines are planned and adjusted in consultation with families to take in to account the unique needs of each child.
Educators respond to children's emotional and physical needs through building a two-way communication with each family. Families provide information on their children's rest, toilet training and eating needs, which Educators use to plan meal times and routines for each child.
Our highly trained staff respond to children's verbal and non-verbal signals throughout the day and provide comfort through developing strong bonds with each child.
All Council Early Education Centres employ trained cooks to prepare nutritious meals for the children each day. All meals are included within our fees. This includes:
- breakfast cereals and milk
- morning and afternoon teas which can be a mix of vegetable platters, homemade slices, fruit plates
- lunch (hot meals such as pasta bakes, stir fry, vegetarian frittatas and homemade pies)
- late afternoon tea and snack including sandwiches and fruit pieces to tide children over to dinner time
Our centres follow the NSW Health Nutritional Guidelines, providing a minimum of 50% of children's Recommended Dietary Intake each day. Our menus are designed in accordance with Feed Australia guidelines and the NSW Department of Health’s Munch and Move requirements.
A parent recently shared their experience with us:
“I'm sitting in my office with tears running down my face. It’s been an absolute delight to read through what our baby girl is doing while we are not with her. Both my husband and I have seen such development in our daughter since she started at Hobart Place. She is always happy to be dropped off and sometimes, even sad to be picked up! This makes us very happy to know that she must be enjoying her time at the centre every day.” Danielle.
Enquiries can be directed to Children's Services on 9710 0466 or ChildrensServices@ssc.nsw.gov.au