St Columba's Uniting Kindergarten

Kindergarten
34
Open day May 17. Call us to arrange a tour.

St Columba’s Community Kindergarten has been caring for and educating the children of Sale since 1970.

Many of our children are from farming families with parents playing an integral role in helping support the kinder and educational curriculum which has a strong focus on agriculture, environmental stewardship, and community.

We are conveniently located around the corner from Wellington Shire Council. Our kindergarten features a large outdoor space adorned with beautiful old shady trees and a yard wall creatively decorated with paintings by our children.

To showcase our facility we have created a 3-D Virtual Tour with a dollhouse view and a highlight reel.

Environment

Our town features beautiful natural surroundings extending beyond the doors of St Columba’s. Our yard has an enormous old tree and a large palm which provides dappled sunlight and protective shade during summer. With plenty of outdoor and indoor spaces and modern facilities, our environment offers a variety of space and support for every child to thrive.

Our kindergarten features:

  • Planned and intentional indoor spaces
  • Fully renovated bathrooms for children and adults
  • Modern stove and cooktop in the kitchen
  • Trees and natural shade
  • Bush tucker and vegetable and herb gardening beds
  • Shade sail
  • Recycling area encouraging sustainability and caring for the environment
  • Worm farm
Learning Experiences

We help children build a connection with the land they live on and we make it a priority to embed Aboriginal perspectives throughout the program. With fun, educational activities, ranging from gardening, worm farming, and farm excursions, our children develop sustainable living practices and a sense of stewardship for the natural environment.

A big art of our program is our fortnightly Nature Kinder Program where we visit an offsite local area for the day. This is a wonderful chance for the children to learn about nature, the local flora and fauna and caring for the environment. This occurs each Wednesday in terms 2,3&4. The children meet at kinder and we go by bus. The children are picked up from kinder at normal pick up time having had a buy and fulfilling day.

Our kindergarten is part of the Early Language Program and the children learn Auslan Sign Language

A qualified teacher visits the kinder for 3 hours a week to work with the children and we have embedded the language throughout the kinder week.

Cooking is a regular experience at kinder as we have a daily Breakfast Program which incorporates cereal, toast and a variety of healthy cooking ideas.

At our kindergarten:

  • We encourage respect for ourselves, each other and our world.
  • We promote sustainable living and encourage children to develop everyday sustainable practices such as recycling and gardening and composting.
  • We have a bush tucker garden and use our compost for the garden.
  • We do a daily Brain Gym session with the children
  • We have a rich language program of story reading, story telling, literacy and discussion groups.
  • We have of lots of small groups for science, cooking, language and numeracy games and activities
  • We run a Perceptual motor program. (PMP)

To limit our footprint we regularly go for walks to a variety of local places such as the library, post office, fire station, art gallery, dentist and many other interesting sites.

We offer a number of adventurous excursions to help children get in touch with the local community and environment, including visits to:

  • A local farm
  • Seaspray Beach
  • The local hospital to meet some of Sale’s elderly residents
  • The local post office, fire station, art gallery, library, fruit shop, and dentist
  • Maffra Gym
  • Traffic school

We also have a fantastic range of visitors and special guests for children to learn about the world around them from the comfort of our kindergarten. These include visits from:

  • Local shire sustainability Officer to consolidate learnings
  • Bunnings warehouse educator
  • Gippsland Water Education Officer
  • Responsible Pet Program to teach about dog safety awareness
  • Koori education officer
  • Local service providers including police, paramedics, allied health workers, school crossing supervisors….
  • Reptile handlers.
Health and wellbeing

We work closely with children and families to help them develop healthy and nutritious eating habits. We run a much-loved daily breakfast program which helps children kick-start their day and fulfil key social and emotional needs of young children.

To guide children towards making healthy choices:

  • We grow our own produce in our garden including herbs, vegetables, and fruit
  • We accommodate diverse dietary requirements
  • We practise and emphasise food safety
  • We work sensitively with parents and families from a range of cultural backgrounds to ensure cultural foods meet standard requirements
  • We offer progressive snack and lunchtime to empower children to ask for what they want and when
  • We educate children and their families about healthy eating and nutrition
  • We run a daily breakfast program and encourage the children to be as independent as possible
  • We cook healthy food options on a regular basis. Some are for breakfast but others are healthy snack options and some are healthy lunch or meal options
  • Recipe cards are available for parents to utilise.

We also participate in community health and wellbeing programs, including:

  • The Healthy Together Achievement Program
  • Sun Smart Program
  • Smiles 4 Miles
Family and community

St Columba’s has been a much-loved institution in the community for nearly 50 years. That’s because we foster close relationships with community members and our educators enable families to feel welcomed and included. Teaching children the importance of building community relationships plays an important role in developing their feelings of belonging and security.

Parents and families can participate when:

  • We invite them to talk to the children about their jobs, hobbies and other interesting topics
  • They volunteer their time to provide support and resources for our programs
  • They assist with fundraising
  • We have a Parent Advisory Committee meeting (positions are elected at the annual meeting of our kindergarten parents)
  • They work with us to complete the Healthy Together Achievement Program (a Victorian Government initiative)
  • They volunteer their time to help with gardening, cooking, international days, and excursions

Various people, groups or services within our community that we engage with regularly include:

  • All local schools
    • Sale Primary, Guthridge Primary, Araluen Primary, St Marys Catholic Primary, St Thomas Catholic Primary, Sale Specialist School, Airly Primary
  • Indigenous community members and groups
  • Gippsland Library and Art Gallery
  • Sale Police
  • Sale Fire Station representatives
  • Victorian Ambulance Service in Sale
  • Sale Business Post Office
  • Central Gippsland Health (Health Promotions Officer)
  • Georgie Chicken, Koori Preschool worker
  • Responsible Pets
  • Gippsland Water Education Officer
  • Local farm owners
  • Local vegetable farms
  • Farming families of St Columba’s
  • Local Aboriginal community members
Languages

Our educators always welcome new families from diverse backgrounds. English is our primary language for written and spoken communication with parents and families. However, we can have all forms of communication translated for families who speak languages other than English, including Vietnamese, Arabic, Chinese, and Cambodian.

We have a small but growing Bilingual children’s library with books in Arabic, Chinese, Vietnamese and a few other languages.

Special services

Our educators are experienced in working with children who live with a range of physical and intellectual disability or have experienced challenges and trauma. Our educators are equipped with the skills to provide safe and nurturing environments to all children.

All educators have been training in Protective Behaviours and we run regular Protective Behaviours intentional teaching sessions.

Fee information

4 year old kindergarten

$395.00 per term

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday 8.45am - 1.45pm

3 year old kindergarten

$395.00 per term

Friday 9am - 2.00pm

Enrolments

For interest in a kindergarten place for 2023, please complete the Uniting expression of interest form.

For a place this year, we will be back in contact with you within a few days to discuss your care needs.

For more information or if you’d like to arrange a visit, please Get in touch or call us on 1800 183 103.

Fill out an expression of interest form to find out more

Fill out an expression of interest form to find out more

Express interest