Rochedale Christian Children’s Centre November / December News
WOW! What a busy couple of months we have had here at the centre. Can you believe that there is only 5 weeks till Christmas?
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the staff for the effort, time and commitment that they put into the rooms day in and day out, they go above and beyond the call of duty each and every day, so
without each and everyone one of you our centre would not be the best.
We also want to as our parents for trusting us with your most precious gifts each and every day. Thank you for your support, understanding and prayers.
At this time of year we often have a few tears as we saw goodbye to our Kindergarten Children and we finish off the year by celebrating graduation with them. This was a wonderful night and we are so proud of all the children. We wish them all the very best for the future and look forward to hearing all about their achievements in the years to come.
End of year happenings
Centre Christmas Party
Don’t forget our centre Christmas party is on Friday 27th Nov @5pm 199 Rochedale Road, Rochedale (New Heart Baptist Church) Bring your best singing voices and join us for a carols night after the party J. All the children have been busy practising their singing and are all very excited.
Please remember that the centre will be closing at 4pm on this day so that the staff can prepare for the party. All children need to be collected by 4pm.
Last day for 2015- Thursday 24th Dec will be our last day for the year, again on this day the centre will be closing at 4pm. If you could assist us and ensure that all children are collected prior to this time it is very much appreciated.
The centre will re-open on Monday 4th Jan 2016 @6:30 am.
Please note the days that the centre is closed over the Christmas/New Year period will not be charged.
End of year accounts
Please ensure that all accounts are at a zero balance by the 23rd Dec. If you are finishing up earlier than this day please ensure that fees are finalised before your last day. If you are paying by B-Pay and Direct Debit, remember that these payments can take up to 5 days to clear.
Are you taking holidays over the Dec/Jan period? If so could you please make sure to let myself and Claire know so that we can apply the holiday fees for you and also to assist us with rostering of staff over this period.
New sign in/ out procedure
As I am sure you are all aware by now we have introduced a new electronic sign in/out system. It was the centres aim to become more sustainable and to also make things quicker at drop off and pick up time. Many of you have had great feedback and like the new system. For most part this has been a fairly easy transition.
From time to time in the afternoon the internet seems to run a little slow causing the system to take a bit longer to function, unfortunately this is beyond our control as the internet in Rochedale seems to run slower at times. We will continue to monitor this and if this becomes an increasing issue we will take further action to rectify the issues.
Over the next couple of weeks we will be taking all the children to visit their new classrooms for 2016. Our main reason for doing this is to help the children feel safe, secure and supported as they transition to the new room. It also helps build attachments to the new staff while feeling secure with their current teacher. If you have any questions in regards to transitions please feel free to ask.
Ditto’s keep safe adventure show was very popular with our juniors, pre-kindy and Kindergarten children. The show is linked to the Bravehearts organisation. The centre is required under the National Quality Standards to teach children, staff and families about child protection and this show was a brilliant way to begin to teach the children about personal safety. We will be booking the show again for next year and would encourage as many families as possible to become involved with child safety. Attached to this newsletter is a Christmas message from In Safe Hands and is a good reminder for this time of year and has some great tips for parents to help children feel safe and secure.
Don’t forget that the centre has a facebook page. We love using this page to convey up and coming events, events within the community, reminders etc etc.please feel free to join our pages. (Rochedale Christian Children’s Centre) It is also a great way for parents to share recipes, ideas etc.
Well that is about all the news we have . We can’t wait to see you all at the Christmas Party and we wish everybody a and a safe and Happy New Year.
We look forward to seeing everyone back in 2016.
IT’S NOT CALLED THE SILLY SEASON FOR NOTHING!
Christmas is a great time for children to enjoy family and friends. But it can also be a time when they learn some dangerous lessons that could make them more vulnerable to abusers. Let’s take a look at some of these lessons we are teaching our kids and make sure we don’t get caught in some of these common traps.
Make sure you tell parents about this – and encourage them to do the 7 Steps 2 Safety course to ensure they protect their children over the holiday season and into the future. Your advice could be the best present they get this Christmas!
Santa is a Stranger
What have we been thinking all this time?! We sit our children on a strange man’s lap – he’s dressed in a ridiculous red suit, has a weird long white beard and facial hair, and talks in a spooky low voice saying “Ho ho ho” all the time.
Then – when our children’s perfectly good instincts tell them this could be dangerous, they scream and cry with fear. But instead of validating this fear and nurturing the very instincts that could one day save them from a predator - we encourage, beg and plead with them to stay on the man’s lap on their own while parents step away to have the photo taken! Then we cap it all off by saying, “Smile!”
If very young children are scared of Santa then there’s no need to push them to interact with him. If you’re desperate for a photo then hold your child while you’re standing beside Santa – but if even this is too scary – then the most sensible thing to do is photo shop him in later! Let children learn the lesson that when they let a parent know they’re scared, then they will be protected and will feel safe again.
This is the very beginning of teaching children to listen to their instincts and feelings and then making good choices to feel safe.
If children are a little older you can talk with them about how they’re feeling. Make sure you validate their fear so they learn to listen to their instincts instead of ignoring them. You could
say, “I can see you’re feeling scared and frightened. That’s okay – Santa looks scary and he’s a person we don’t know.” Then you can discuss how the Santa at the shop isn’t real, and it’s just a bit of fun at Christmas, and then ask them whether they’d like to have a photo or not – but reassure them that they have the choice.
You should also let them know that you’ll stay with them and watch them the whole time while they are there and anytime they want to leave they are free to do so. Make sure you talk to them later about how they listened to their feelings and told someone about feeling scared and now they feel safe – so they learn that trusting their feelings and talking to people about them is good.
A Less Stranger Kind of Danger
Christmas is a great time to catch up with those friends and relatives we only see once a year. But sometimes there’s a reason we don’t see these people more often! And sometimes we see friends and relatives more often but we wish we only saw them once a year! But if you think it’s hard dealing with this as an adult – try being a kid!
Remember when children are greeting or saying goodbye to friends and relatives – let them decide how they’d like to do that. Don’t trample all over children’s instincts by forcing them to kiss furry Aunt Thelma, or hug smelly Uncle Dave. Children have a right to make choices and a right to feel safe. If they don’t feel comfortable with kissing or hugging others, don’t push them to do it.
Make sure you stop yourself before you say things like, “Don’t be rude – give your Aunty a kiss” or “Uncle Dave loves you – he bought you that lovely gift – now you go and give him a hug goodbye”. Don’t let other relatives do this either – interrupt them and explain that you don’t expect your children to be forced to do things that make them feel unsafe.
If children are scared or apprehensive, validate that feeling and let them know it’s okay to be a little worried about people sometimes – and then encourage them to make a choice to feel safe. They may choose to do a high five instead of a hug or kiss, or just a friendly smile and wave if they don’t want to get even that close.
It’s important to remember that when it comes to child abuse, statistics tell us that friends and family are more likely to be offenders than strangers – so don’t drop your guard and don’t squash your child’s instincts even around family and friends.