Outside School Hours & Vacation Care
“Children are not a distraction from more important work. They are the most important work” C.S. Lewis. At OSHC, the children are the reason we come to work every day. Although OSHC lives within the school grounds, it is in a world of its own. When the bell rings, the fun begins! We pride ourselves on making OSHC a relaxing place for the children to be, a second home. In the classroom they focus primarily on their academic pursuits but at OSHC they have a chance to play. They have opportunity to develop their gross and fine motor skills through climbing trees and creating with LEGO. They develop their social skills through the interactions with friends in their class, their grade and across the rest of the college. They develop their emotional skills in playing and negotiating with children younger and older than themselves, learning empathy, compromise, equity and fairness. They develop their cognitive skills in being challenged by the activities prepared by the Educators coming from our weekly program.
Our program is derived from the ideas and suggestions of the children. After each session, all members of the OSHC team write observations in our Learning Stories book which is available for your viewing on the sign out table. The observations are about conversations they have had with the children or experiences of the children that they have witnessed. From these observations, we program activities for the following week and beyond. In the mornings, the children come in and gravitate straight to the program on the window to see what has been planned for the morning session. In the afternoon, they check out the program to see who their leader is for the afternoon and the activities that are on. They also look ahead in the week to see what is on the menu, which activities are programmed and what they have to look forward to! In the staff room, the teachers have a Benjamin Franklin quote on the walls - “Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn”. Across the College, the children are involved in their learning and OSHC no different. From science experiments to cooking, creating to challenging, the children are in involved in their play and their play is learning.
“Children are great imitators so give them something great to imitate.” At OSHC, we keep this as our focus, in the knowledge that children observe and absorb all that we do. We pride ourselves on the relationships we have built with the children and families and enjoy working with them. The OSHC team has seen some changes and transitions this year. We have a core of our staff remaining: Kaitlyn Besgrove is our Assistant Service Leader and Educational Leader, Annette Anderson, Robyn Brown, Hayley Hoseck, Jeremy Moore and Kathleen Thomas have continued on with us as Educators and are the pillars of the service, absolute professionals. We farewelled Shannen Campbell as she graduated at the end of last year and took up a full time position as a secondary science teacher. Tessa Sells joined us for a brief stint before needing to focus on other pursuits. Amelia Searle had a big finished to 2017. She became Amelia Simmonds, landed her dream job as a liaison implementing the new National Disability Insurance Scheme and as a result, had to leave us at Faith OSHC. It was a very sad farewell but we know Milly will be doing an amazing job in her new role helping countless numbers families.
Vacation Care remains a highlight at Faith. We love putting together exciting programs for the children (and the staff!) to enjoy! We’ve had some great incursions – Crazy Candles, Rotation Creations, Ocean Life Education, Stufflers, Street Science, Holt Bolt and Red Scorpion Laser Skirmish (always a favourite!). We’ve also ventured off campus – Settlement Cove Lagoon, Event Cinemas with a sneaky Sizzler lunch, Bounce, Aussie World, King Tutt’s Putt Putt, Crank, Sky Zone and the Tree Top Challenge. Can’t wait for the December- January holidays! With the awesome activities on offer over Vacation Care, more Educators are required. Julie Jones and Rachel Nociforo from Faith have been helping us out so we can take more children on our excursions, as have Zoya Daryau, Steph Fernandez, Steph Lynch and Kate Connolly. Lauren Campbell-Sells will also be joining us over the coming holidays.
This year we have implemented a new Sign In/Out program called QK Kiosk. It uses an iPad rather than pen and paper to sign in. I’ve been so impressed with the response of both families and staff who have embraced the new system, even those who avoid technology at all costs!
I count it a privilege to be a part of the team at OSHC and the College at large. I have worked in the OSHC sector for many years and I can honestly say that you have the most innovative OSHC I have come across. This is a direct result of the Educators you have caring for your children. Next time you’re in please thank them for the work that they do and congratulate them for the service they have created for your children. They most certainly deserve it.