Rooms & Programs

At Dawson Street Children’s Co-operative, we proudly offer four rooms where our educational programs come to life. Our experienced and compassionate educators lead engaging activities that promote holistic development.

Our programs are thoughtfully crafted to foster a strong sense of identity, connection to the world, and overall wellbeing in every child. Through inquiry-based projects and routine outings, we encourage children to become confident, involved learners and effective communicators.

We value the input of families and the wider community, incorporating feedback, children’s interests, intentional teaching, and play-based experiences into our programs. We firmly believe in the power of play as a vehicle for learning and offer safe, inviting environments where children are free to delve into a variety of educational play experiences, from messy play to outdoor adventures in our natural yard areas.

Additionally, we recognise the importance of supporting vulnerable children and families. In alignment with Moreland Council’s commitment to state government policy directions, we prioritise enrolment for children with additional needs, those of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander background, children known to Child Protection, and those eligible for fee subsidies. It’s our mission to ensure that all children have equal access to high-quality early childhood education and care.

 

 

Gumnut Room

Our babies’ room age range can be from 12 weeks to 2½ years. We have five experienced educators. Four hold Diplomas in Children’s Services and one hold Certificate III in Children’s Services. We have a large room which allows us to provide and cater for the individual needs of our babies with a separate sleep room for naps, and their own outdoor area.

Wattle Room

Our toddler room caters for children aged from 2 to 3½ years. Four educators hold a Diploma in Children’s Services and one hold a Certificate III in Children’s Services. We provide a flexible, fun program with lots of natural and messy play.

Kinder Room- Mallee and Lilly Pilly Program

We have two Early Childhood Teachers, one Certificate III Educator and one Diploma Trained Educator.

Within this program we also run our kindergarten program for the children in the year before going to school. In Victoria each child is eligible for one full year of funded kindergarten the year before he or she starts school. To access this program, children need to have turned four before 30 April in the relevant year; however recent studies have shown that is it best for the children to be 5 before starting school so this is what we recommend. Our kindergarten teacher will liaise with you about school readiness and how your child is progressing to meet this milestone. We run Tree Kinder once a week for the funded kindergarten children where we explore the nature environment at our local Brunswick Park.

The philosophy in these rooms is that children learn through play. It is the primary process through which children learn about themselves, their peers and the world around them. The centre provides an environment that promotes self-directed play opportunities: children are encouraged to choose their own experiences and are active participants in their own learning. A qualified kinder teacher provides the kinder program Monday to Friday for 5 hours each day. Children then access the long day care program outside of kinder hours, allowing parents the opportunity to work a full day.

Outdoor Education Program

At DSCC we believe that a quality outdoor environment creates endless opportunities for discovery and learning. We value our outdoor curriculum and the learning that takes place as much as we value our indoor programs. Outdoor play is now rightfully front and centre for innovative thinking about early childhood pedagogy across the country, as evidenced in the Early Years Learning Framework. Educators play a significant role in offering children direct experiences with nature and being positive role models. They demonstrate not only awe and wonder, but also respect and care for the natural world. This fundamental learning with significant adults is essential if children are to begin to understand the complexities of sustainability, the systems that support life and why caring for the land, plants, animals and ourselves matters.

 

We have an assigned and dedicated Outdoor Educator to work in this space, oversee the outdoor curriculum and support the children’s individual education and development. The outdoor teacher oversees all outdoor spaces and develops these programs and spaces in collaboration with our educators.

All our programs cater for individual needs within the group care environment. We expect that children will stay in their allocated room for the whole year to build secure bonds with educators and develop positive relationships with peers. Children will transition during December for a positive start to the following year.

Contact us to discuss joining the waiting list & arrange a tour of the centre.