Room 6

The pre-school children at Monash Children’s Centre are cared for in the Alkira room. The ages of the children enrolled in this area are between 3 years and 5 years at the 1st of January.

Room 6, the Alkira room which means “Bright and Sunny,” has up to 24 children (per day) with 4 teachers.

Children in the Alkira room begin to display an increase in self control and inclusion. Play begins to incorporate a range of children and a heightened awareness of likes and dislikes. Imagination begins to lead play as children assign roles to act out structured play. Skills in negotiation, co-operation, language and compromise begin to emerge to a new level.

Children are displaying their language skills and are beginning to have fun with language. New words are made up and silly rhymes are created. Children learn about cause and effect and extend their vocabulary and understanding of words through the use of descriptive language.

Our pedagogy identifies that children of this age are more interested in playing with other children than by themselves. To help children develop these friendships the environment and experiences offered promote opportunities for small group play. The experiences set up lend themselves to encourage 2-4 children to interact together. During this time they develop a sense of social awareness and can feel safe to speak out their ideas and feelings with their peers.

Imaginary play opportunities are in abundance. The world of pretend play is an important part of developing friendships and learning about empathy and sympathy as children learn about other’s feelings and various reactions. Teachers share in imaginative play experiences with children, assisting them in communicating with each other and developing ideas for extended play. A vast range of open ended and natural materials are available for children to use as props in representing their own understandings of cultural perspectives in play.

Teachers explore concepts and investigate possibilities with children. As “budding scientists” the children display their abilities as investigators and often lead conversations in hows and whys. Ideas that are regularly explored and developed are in playing guessing games, gardening, cooking and “backyard” walks.

The natural outdoor landscape offered for the 3-5 year old children promotes opportunities to be inquisitive, take risks and connect with nature. The potential for serendipitous learning is endless in this yard. A bamboo forest boundary with large boulders and a river course invite the children to spontaneously engage in dramatic, imaginative, active and sensory play. A large enclosed and sheltered verandah enables the outside space to be used all year round.