Where Happier, Smarter and Safer Children Grow Through Excellence in Child Care Education

  • 08 6192 0111
  • southernriver@leapstartchildcare.com.au
  • 233 Southern River Rd, Southern River, WA, 6110
 

Unique and Safe Play Environment

It’s long been acknowledged that “free play” is a vital part of every early learning curriculum.

Leap Start Early Learning Child Care Southern River children all enjoy state-of-the-art play space and equipment. We have made a deliberate decision to move away from “plastic” equipment and play space so prevalent in the last decade to a Unique and Safe Play Environment. This gives children a more realistic way to explore their world while still being safe. Your child will enjoy structured and unstructured learning and games in the architecturally designed creek beds with a safety valve system, tunnels, veggie garden, a water wheel, fruit trees, rock climbing wall, sand pits, walking track, a bike path with traffic lights, paintable wall… the list goes on. The mud pit and water pump are favourites too. They will love it!!

Great care has been taken to create this “safe risk” environment which encourages children to step outside their boundaries.

We also are advocates of open-ended activities where materials do not have one use only. For example, sand can be used to build a castle or a tunnel; blocks can be used to build a tower, a bridge, a road, or a doll’s house. The cause-effect nature of our world is explored at every opportunity with materials that can be used across multiple areas which encourages children’s creativity and imagination. Those noisy plastic battery-operated “single-use” toys are not used at Leap Start Early Learning Child Care Southern River because they don’t comply with STEAM Learning.

The native trees, plants, and grass remind children they are part of the real world, and a butterfly landing on a rock or spider building a web between branches are seen as genuine learning opportunities.

All of our plants are either edible or they are native with an indigenous purpose. This is part of the STEAM Learning approach in that the children can observe, explore and experience the life cycles of plants and insects naturally and their relationship to create a habitat.

Naturally, sun safety is a priority; Slip, Slop, Slap, Sleek, Slide is mandatory outdoors, and those times of the year when UV levels reach moderate, in accordance with our Sun Safe Policy, the shade sails go up.

Another unique feature of Leap Start Early Learning Child Care Southern River is that we grow and harvest our own food to teach the children and provide for the kitchen. Only edible plants or natives are grown in the children’s garden to follow ecological best practices.

Our Interactive Educational Garden was specially designed in collaboration with our staff, parents, the children, and Early Childhood Expert Kimberly Beasley. It includes items like creek beds, tunnels, and three garden phones to promote the children’s imagination during play. Our outdoor area is situated in the middle of our facility ensuring the children are protected by the buildings from any outside disturbances at all times.

We also embrace the local indigenous culture and believe it is important for the children’s overall education. Our most prominent feature is an 86-metre-long piece of Art on the fence that was created by a mother and daughter Noongar elder team combining traditional techniques with modern technology. It depicts the Wagyl, the creator of the Southern River Wetlands. It’s Called “Wagyl-A Story Walk” as walking past it, 5 QR codes can be scanned which then leads to a video telling the Wagyl’s story in Noongar and English, explaining the flora and fauna, and also the story of the artists.

Note: In terms of indoor space, it’s important for children to have individual play space, particularly the younger ones who are at the solitary play stage. We have designed every room with the space so each child experiences the joy of their “play area” uninterrupted. Yes, they have room to roll and crawl without disturbing other babies.

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