Children are innately spiritual and spirituality plays an important role in self-discovery and learning. As a faith-based organisation we respect and nurture the spirituality and different faiths of those within our care.

Each day your child will see their educators living the Catholic values of care, compassion, honesty, kindness and thankfulness through their actions and the use of symbols, stories and sharing exercises. Our educators will also work to understand what’s important to your family and look for opportunities to incorporate all families’ beliefs and traditions in their program. In this way your child will be given the opportunity to explore their spirituality in positive and age appropriate ways.

Nuturing your child's spirituality

Children are naturally spiritual and at times spirited. A child’s spirituality is a central part of who they are, and who they will become. Research suggests their identity, sense of belonging and sense of meaning and purpose are inextricably linked to their spirituality and the way it is nurtured in their early years.

We aim to provide children with the language and ways to respond to and express their spirituality. This includes helping them understand and foster important values, develop their love of self and community and show respect by caring for their environment. We teach children to recognise and celebrate diversity through the celebration of religious feasts across many traditions.

We are active members of our school and parish communities and celebrate special masses and liturgies with them as well as provide children with the opportunity to explore our Christian values through age appropriate stories. Another way we help children express their spirituality is by harnessing their innate sense of wonder about the natural environment and demonstrating how to care for and respect it.

Research shows that if spirituality isn’t nurtured in the early years (up to eight years of age) it is often lost. We will nurture your child’s spirituality while helping them develop a strong sense of self and connection to the world around them.

Quiet reflection

We have fashioned our prayer table to provide a place for quiet reflection and sending special thoughts.

If a child seems out of sorts, restless, unwell or upset we might ask them if they want to go to the prayer table and spend some time by themselves. If we know they are dealing with a particular family event we ask them if they would like to send a special thought to someone.

These are moments in a child’s day which allow them to knowingly or unknowingly connect with their spirituality. Giving them a quiet space, a moment to think about how they are feeling and an opportunity to send someone kind thoughts are ways of encouraging their spiritual development.

Caring for our community

A sense of empathy and concern for others in our community is something our teachers will seek to inspire in your child. The children at Emmaus College Kindergarten collected blankets and jumpers to help homeless people in their community get through the winter. In class discussions the children came to understand the idea that some people don’t have a home and started thinking about the experiences of people who are homeless. This inspired the children to think about how we could help the homeless, including coming up with out of the box solutions such as putting showers in local parks so people could wash before bed each night. We were touched by the compassion and understanding our children showed for others in their community.

Celebrating Diwali

At Good Shepherd Child Care Services many of our families were preparing to celebrate Diwali in November. The children couldn’t help but bring their excitement for the Hindu new year into the service. So, our educators helped them share this important ritual with their friends by having the children watch videos and talk about what Diwali means to their families. Each of the children also made their own lantern and Diya to light up our centre for the new year.