Respect for our children, and teaching them respect for themselves and the people and things around them helps them grow in all kinds of ways. We show respect for children by recognising their individuality and giving them a ‘voice’ in their day to day programs.

We challenge stereotypes, celebrate diversity and provide opportunities for your child to understand and show respect for different cultural, religious and family traditions. By encouraging children to make their own decisions, take responsibility for their actions and stand in other people’s shoes we help them understand how what they do can impact on themselves and others.

Giving children a voice

We show respect for our children by recognising their individuality and giving them a ‘voice’ in their day to day programs.

Noticing that one of the kindergarten children had a keen interest in the Super Moon, our educators at Good Shepherd Child Care Services set a class project on solar space providing an opportunity for the child to share their knowledge and interest with the class. In the same way, at St Anthony’s Kindergarten many of the children showed a keen interest in dinosaurs. Their educator asked them to identify what they liked about dinosaurs and to draw their own. One of the children didn’t like dinosaurs and with her educators’ support she chose to draw a beautiful unicorn instead.

Standing in other people's shoes

Our educators model respect for others by providing opportunities for children to stand in other people’s shoes. Our teachers used local flooding as an opportunity for the children to reflect on the challenges faced by affected families. The class talked about what they would do if their house was flooded and imagined what it would be like to wear someone else’s clothes because their own clothes were suddenly gone.

Many of the children had struggled to understand why people were treating the floods as a tragedy. By talking about the practical challenges faced by families, the children were better able to understand the gravity of the situation and developed empathy for the affected families.

One with nature

Our children learn to respect their natural environment and physical surrounds through play.

At St Mary’s Long Day Care + Kindergarten children were eagerly observing birds, bugs and other creatures in their garden. So, with the support of their educators, they built a ‘bug hotel’ out of recycled and natural materials. In the process, the children learned about the bug life cycle, the kind of environment they need and how they contribute to a healthy ecosystem.

Across our centres children learn to respect and care for their environment through recycling and reducing waste. At Southport Catholic Parish Long Day Care + Kindergarten the children learn about the natural environment during weekly bush kindy activities. During these expeditions the children have become increasingly concerned about the volume of litter in the bush and have started caring for this space by helping to pick up rubbish during each visit.

At many of our centres the children have built worm farms, which they feed with recycled green waste from their own meals. Over time they are able to use the worm juice and castings on their veggie gardens to help them grow.