Building meaningful relationships with parents
In respecting families’ beliefs, values and philosophies, St Nicholas educators strive to create an environment that encourages active communication and participation in children’s learning programs to create a sense of belonging to the St Nicholas community.
“We have a strong community base with the parents [at St Nick’s],” Lyn says, who is an educator at St Nicholas Early Education Lochinvar.”
“We have a lot of community interest and input. For example, we have an adventure section on our wall. If [families] have gone on holidays, they send in photos of where they’ve gone and we write a little blurb about that. This also helps the parents to feel included within our centre as well.”
Communicating with parents
St Nicholas Early Education encourages parents to call or email as often or for whatever reason they see fit.
“More often than not, once these children’s parents have walked away they’re all good,” Lyn says of the children who cry as their parents leave each morning.
If anything happens that educators feel parents should know, they are informed in a manner relative to the urgency of the matter.
“For the worried parents, they can call at any time. If we know that they’re worried, we’ll give them the courtesy of calling to say their child is happy,” she explains.
Portfolios, floor books and closed Facebook groups
St Nicholas educators document their observations of children to capture any events or behaviours that relate to each child’s experience at St Nick’s. These observations are then used to evaluate and extend their learning as individuals or as part of a group.
A variety of documentation styles are used to capture a picture of the whole child as he/she participates in a learning experience, including:
individual portfolios, which document the children’s individual learning journey throughout their time at St Nick’s;
floor books, which are a snapshot of the children’s learning as part of a class group;
and a closed Facebook group, which includes regular photo and video updates of the children’s collective learning experience and provides a more informal means of communication between parents and educators.
Each style of documentation covers a different aspect of the child’s learning journey and is accessible for parents/guardians to view at any time. Each child’s learning journey is shaped through the open and inclusive input of all major stakeholders within the child’s domain.
Contact St Nicholas Early Education
To learn more about documentation and communication at St Nicholas Early Education, or to find out more about enrolling your child in one of our early education and care centres, click here.