Projects and Initiatives:
Aberfoyle Hub Preschool is a member of AuSSI SA (Australian sustainable Schools Initiative South Australia)
We have placed environmental education as a focus for our program and these practices are embedded in our everyday activities. We also recognise the importance of nature play activities and these are incorporated into our outdoor environment.
Focus on reducing wastage
Core value: Everyone in our preschool community’s actions reflect that we are all capable and responsible for contributing towards sustainable communities.
We have the following sustainable practices in place:
- Three bin system (landfill, recyclable, compostable) which are labelled and accessible
- Children are informed though games, stories, songs, guest presenters and discussions about sorting waste, where rubbish goes and which waste items can be recycled or composted
- Children are encouraged at snack times to separate their rubbish for composting and recycling.
- Landfill and re-suable items are sent home e.g. zip lock bags
- Food scraps go into compost bins, or fed to the chooks or worm farm (at Taylors road) and children are involved in maintaining these systems
- Children and families are reminded in the Nutrition Policy and new family’s information session to send food with minimal or no packaging
- Community donates packaging, boxes, cartons, lids etc. which are re-used for creative craft experiences
- Use both side of paper at the preschool e.g. fax machine, drawing
- Tissues and paper towel go in the Council green bin
- If equipment is broken, the preschool try to repair it before considering replacement.
We are working towards embedding these sustainable practices:
- Burying different types of rubbish to watch decomposition with the children
- Sorting and measuring waste
- Diverting more recyclable and compostable items away from landfill
- Purchasing durable, natural or salvaged materials and equipment where possible e.g. pre-love pots and pans, timber, bricks and pipes
- Discussing with children the concept of re-use e.g. what is used more than once? What else could this be used for?
- Asking children to collect information about waste systems at home
- Promoting nude food
- Reducing energy and water wastage
In our Gardens:
At both sites children are involved in the planting and care of our vegetable gardens. Produce is eaten fresh or used in cooking activities. Fruit trees are developing and provide opportunities for children to experience new taste sensations.
Our large gum trees provide habitats for bird life and koalas. 2 large rainwater tanks enable us to save on water consumption with the water being used for play activities and to water plants.
We have hens at both sites and children and their families collect the eggs, feed the hens and care for them on weekends and during holidays. Each year chickens are hatched at Taylors Rd site in an incubator.
Nature play provides opportunities for children to develop their learning dispositions of imagination, curiosity, resilience, persistence, confidence, collaboration, problem solving and self-regulation.
In our outdoor environment we want children to have opportunities to explore, take risks, challenge themselves and engage in open ended activities to develop these dispositions.
Children engage in mud play, cook and role play in the mud kitchen, balance on large logs, explore water properties, shift rocks, climb on boulders, step across tree stumps, relax in our huge bamboo tepee, play with pipes, sticks, stones, pine cones, bark and other natural materials.