Timetable & Curriculum

Balcombe Timetable

Timetable

In 2011, Balcombe Preschool was asked to pilot Universal Access in providing 15 hours of 4 year old preschool a week. Ongoing collaboration over the past 5 years between educators and families has seen us develop our unique timetable which continues to offer this service to 75 local families. Every preschool group attends a morning session, an afternoon session and a full day. 3 educators work with each group providing a higher than required child:staff ratio and enabling us to often break into smaller groups to work on special projects.

Our full day program has been hugely popular with families and beneficial to children in providing wonderful opportunities for all day projects that would not be possible in a shorter session. It also familiarises children with the concepts of snack & lunch and helps children to develop the ability to self-regulate. Educators have also built in yoga & mediation sessions for all children to experience some relaxation and down time.

Curriculum 

At Balcombe Pre-School, we plan a diverse range of activities and experiences to support each child’s participation in our program. We have areas designed for: co-operative or solitary play, quiet or noisy play, imaginative play, opportunities for creativity, construction activities, problem solving experiences, outdoor equipment and spaces for physical play, opportunities for appreciation of nature and exploration - just to name a few! We also ensure that our program reflects the current interests, abilities and needs of the children we are teaching (working in consultation with the children and their families). 

Outdoor Curriculum

Balcombe Preschool is renowned for its amazing playground.  As well as providing a huge space to run, the bushy environment provides the opportunity for children to observe and explore nature.  Children can also learn about sustainability and caring for animals with our worm farm, vegetable patch and resident chickens: Nuggets, Curry, Schnitzel & Casserole!

In Terms 3 and 4, Barkley (Kerri's dog) joins us each Wednesday and Tuesday to help the children learn how to be safe around dogs as well as teaching responsibility, compassion, love and respect for other living things. Dogs in the classroom can also calm fears, relieve anxiety and teach skills. 

Parents have recently installed 2 new play spaces including a “Mud Kitchen” for creative and messy play as well as a "Relaxation station" for quiet and restful time!

Our fabulous playground caters for all types of play. We are also fortunate to be located adjacent to the Hopetoun Creek reserve which we utilise for picnics, nature walks and exploration and environmental work such as replanting.

Indoor Curriculum

Literacy and numeracy are integral parts of our weekly indoor curriculum. Our permanent numeracy table provides children with the opportunities for enquiry into concepts such as: shape recognition, understanding numbers, measurement, pattern and time.

At our literacy table, children explore prewriting concepts such as: playing with letters and words, scribbling and drawing, making up stories and fine motor development. The learning which takes place at these tables remains constant – just the content changes. 

All children love to pretend and role play. Our imaginative table and dramatic play areas stimulate this type of play and regularly change according to the children's interests.

The extension of an undercover area off our main building has increased the space for children's activities, including, sensory play and painting.