Do you have a child who’s struggling with separation anxiety, especially at when being dropped off at school or early education? Perhaps they’re going through a developmental milestone that makes them need Mum or Dad a bit more than before. This is common starting around six months of age, peaks at 14-18 months, then can happen again when your child hits preschool and school-age. Or maybe your child is new to our service or has recently transitioned studios. The transition from home to early education is a milestone for both children and families.  Separation anxiety can even happen for children who’ve been in Little Scholars for a while. It can be hard moving into a new studio where she or he doesn’t yet know new routines, where things are kept and spending time with different educators with different ways of doing things can be overwhelming for the child. This is all normal.

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If you’re at a loss on how to make things easier on your little one, and yourself, we have some ideas.

Our tips for drop-off

  1. Don’t sneak away 🏃‍♂️ We know you’re trying to prevent tears, but sneaking away creates anxiety and mistrust for your child
  2. Keep goodbyes short 🙋‍♀️ There’s a saying that goes, ‘quick goodbyes make for dry eyes’
  3. Be aware of your own emotions 😭 🙅‍♂️ – When you’re calm and confident, that tells your child that s/he is safe. Young children rely on co-regulation to manage their emotions.

Acknowledge and validate their feelings by saying something like “I know goodbyes can be hard, but I always come back. I will see you later today. I love you.” Give a big hug, a smile and a wink.

Talk it out

Then at home, if your child is old enough, have a chat about why she/he is having a hard time at drop-off, and think about what you can do to alleviate it. Ask him or her what make things easier. Perhaps it’s including a comfort toy, blanket or family photo. Maybe you each have a special bracelet that you can touch when you’re missing each other. Make a plan for something special together when you pick him or her up, like a walk or playing a game together, which will give your child something to look forward to through the day.

Prepare in advance

If you’re preparing your child to go to early education or school, it’s best they understand what their days will look like. So the conversation could look something like ‘we’ll all have breakfast together and get ready for the day. Then we’ll get in the car and first we’ll stop at Little Scholars. I’ll walk you in, give you a big hug, and you’ll go off to have a day of play while I go to work. When I finish work, I’ll jump in the car and come right over to pick you up, then we’ll go _____” These conversations may have to happen several times for it to sink in.

Also, if you’re pondering signing your child up for early education, this is why we offer play dates to children newly enroled but yet to start – this allows them to begin to become familiar with their new educators and studios.

Remember, you can always chat with your educator or campus manager about how to help. We’re always available, and we’ve been through this before, we can offer ideas or reassurances everyone will be OK!

We also know separation anxiety can be a two-way street, especially for new parents, or returning to work after maternity leave. Don’t forget we have our Little Scholars app so you can see pictures of your child, and be reassured that if there were tears from your child, they likely didn’t last long and they’re busy having fun and learning while you’re at work.

Related links:

For parents leaving their babies or young toddlers in care for the first time, it can be a stressful experience. When the paid maternity leave ends, parents must make the decision of whether or not both parents will work outside the home. The choice to leave their young child in early learning and care can create a number of concerns, one big one being how their relationship with their young child will be affected if the parent is not spending the majority of the child’s time with them. These are valid concerns, but research has suggested infant attachment to their parents is not generally affected by being in care, so long as the parents have a strong bond with the child when they are with them.

Understanding Attachment Theory

Attachment theory was first introduced by John Bowlby, a British psychoanalyst and psychiatrist in the 20th Century. Bowlby observed that early attachments could significantly affect a child’s emotional development and adult relationships in later life. He concluded that children between six and 30 months were very likely to form emotional attachments to familiar caregivers, especially if the adults are sensitive and responsive to child communications. This led him to propose the Attachment Theory after he studied the negative impact of maternal deprivation on young children.

Mary Ainsworth, an American psychologist who worked under Bowlby early in her career, later devised an assessment technique called the Strange Situation Classification (SSC) to investigate how attachments might vary between children. Her research in Uganda, then her well-known Baltimore Study in the 1960s, in which she noticed distinct individual differences in the quality of mother-infant interactions over time, led her to categorise these different attachment styles into three types: secure attachment styles, insecure attachment styles, and not-yet attached. She found a connection between maternal sensitivity and secure attachments. Sensitive mothers were familiar with their babies, provided spontaneous and specific detail about their children, and babies of sensitive mothers cried less and felt free to explore in the presence of their mother. Generally, she concluded that babies of sensitive mothers have secure attachments.

Attachment and Caregivers

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While Bowlby’s initial findings focused on maternal deprivation, later studies have contradicted his emphasis. Schaffer & Emerson (1964) found that specific attachments started at about eight months and shortly thereafter, the infants became attached to other people. By 18 months, very few (13%) were attached to only one person, and some had five or more attachments. Rutter (1972) noted that several indicators of attachment, such as protest or distress when an attached person leaves, have been shown for various attachment figures – fathers, siblings, peers, and even inanimate objects. Weisner, & Gallimore (1977) found that mothers are the exclusive carers in only a very small percentage of human societies, and often there are a number of people involved in the care of children, such as relations and friends. Van Ijzendoorn, & Tavecchio (1987) argue that a stable network of attachment figures is more important than the number of figures.

The Positive Effects of Early Learning and Care

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Some studies in the 1970s and 1980s found negative effects on young children in daycare and attachment, but arguments against those studies included that few mothers worked outside the home during those times, and the quality of the care facilities themselves were perhaps lower than you’d see today. Since then, much has changed, and research has shown many positive effects of early learning and care for young children, including social relationship development. One study conducted in Norway found that infants who were in early learning settings scored higher on tests measuring cognitive and language development than infants who were cared for at home. Another study conducted in Canada found that children who attended high-quality care were more likely to to have better cognitive and language development than those who attended lower-quality care or stayed at home. Both the Norwegian and Canadian studies highlight the importance of high-quality early learning for children’s cognitive and language development. High-quality early learning centres provide a safe and stimulating environment where children can learn and develop essential skills. They also offer opportunities for children to interact with other children and adults, helping them develop social skills and emotional intelligence. In Australian early learning settings, we follow a National Quality Standard which lays out seven quality areas on which centres should meet or exceed. The fifth quality area is ‘relationships with children’ and its intent is to promote relationships with children that are responsive, respectful and promote children’s sense of security and belonging. Relationships of this kind free children up to explore the environment and engage in play and learning. Please rest assured, when you’re leaving your child at one of our campuses, your child’s wellbeing is our number one priority. We support children to develop in a holistic manner, including socially, cognitively, physically and emotionally. If there are tears (from either of you!), we’re here for both of you, and know it means your relationship with your child is not only in tact, but flourishing. Read more:

When you think of childcare, you might not necessarily think of early education, but that’s precisely what Little Scholars is doing; providing high calibre early education for the critical first five years of a child’s life, and at the same time, changing society’s perception of what childcare, or early education, is.

Little Scholars has always considered itself as a leader in the sector, but we elevated the quality of education with the addition of Susan Cooper, our group pedagogical leader one year ago.

Pedagogy is a form of teaching strategies in the practice of educating.  It’s the techniques, strategies and approach taken by educators to let learning and development to take place. Pedagogy refers to the interactive process between the educator, the learner and the learning environment and provides reason to the design of learning spaces, materials, and resources on offer. Pedagogical leadership supports educators in relating their pedagogy to content knowledge and educational theories.

My aim is to support educators in entering the child’s world, enabling them to reflect on their practices and build capacity to support the child’s development.

– Susan Cooper, group pedagogical leader for Little Scholars

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One year of pedagogical leadership

In the year since Susan joined us, she’s gone above and beyond to support our educators. Through her pedagogical leadership, Little Scholars has raised the benchmark of its overall quality of teaching, and recognises that providing children with strong foundations for ongoing learning and development is underpinned by a strong pedagogical practice. She inspires educators to employ new approaches to their teaching against up-to-date research, has helped translate the Little Scholars values and principles into practice and has without a doubt increased the quality of experiences and interactions across our campuses.

But the role was daunting at first, according to Susan.

“Having come with approximately 16 years’ experience in having been in varied roles across the sector within early childhood, my love of sharing knowledge and inspiring others drew me to apply to this role,” Susan says. “My experience in playwork allows me to see the true value in children’s play, the need to create spaces and support the learning and approach to working with children to support and facilitate play in its true essence. What really resonated with The Scholars Group and my own personal values and beliefs, was placing children as the core and central to all that we do.

“I see myself as an advocate for children’s rights, being the voice for many and striving to excel toward quality outcomes.”

Mentorship and guidance

The group pedagogical role is focused on mentoring and guiding teams in their practices and challenging new ways of working, to support innovative curriculum ideas, while supporting children’s learning across all Little Scholars campuses.

“I found the team to be so supportive and receptive to change, which has allowed me to share my vision, passion, and skillset,” Susan says.

With Susan’s support, our Deception Bay campus was rated exceeding against the National Quality Standards (NQS) in late 2022. A thrilling result, but not without a lot of preparation. Susan guided Nat, the campus manager, and her team, in the Assessment and Rating Process.

“It was critical that the team worked collaboratively toward a shared goal. This involved building strong relations with the team to build trust and mutual respect. This partnership saw me engage with all stakeholders, while we worked toward targeted goals and worked through evidence-based data to the exceeding themes,” Susan says.

Achievements

Strong knowledge of theory and pedagogy underpinned the quality outcomes, according to Susan. Another great achievement Susan says, was the team being ranked 3rd out of 3,126 early learning centres across the state.

“My role is to take an active role in the development of pedagogy in the early childhood context. I primarily work alongside teams, across our 13 campuses to provide the opportunity to share pedagogical practice, leading knowledge to research and child development,” Susan says. “Not only does pedagogy inform direct work of teaching, but also the more indirect work of leadership. This develops a community of practice, where professional educators can share ideas and knowledge and engage in peer learning.”

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“Little Scholars has always been a leader in our field, due to our commitment and passion to the early years. With the addition of our Group Pedagogical Leader, the effectiveness of our educational program and practice has been elevated to a level we didn’t think was possible,” says Jae Fraser, founder of Little Scholars.

“In Susan’s role she is supporting and mentoring the team to influence children’s learning by fostering family engagement, ensuring fidelity to the Little Scholars curricular philosophy, using data to evaluate the effectiveness of our learning program, and exceeding standards established to optimise learning effective environments,” says Jae. “We couldn’t be happier with the results of this new role just after one year, and we are so excited to see the future.”

Susan’s goals for her role are simple: to continue to strive toward excellence, raising the benchmark in early childhood and placing children at the forefront of everything Little Scholars does.

“I take great pride in the relationships I’ve developed, the partnerships I have established, creating a safe space for the children and educators I work with,” Susan says reflecting on the past year. “Our impact is significant, and I’m thrilled to witness the progress in both the children and educators. I feel grateful to be part of such meaningful work, knowing that we’re making a real difference in the lives of these children.”

We have the very best early education educators at Little Scholars School of Early Learning. It’s our great honour to present our 2023 Little Scholars Employee Award winners. 🎖

These outstanding recipients, through some challenging times, have demonstrated their dedication, commitment and have gone above and beyond this year with fellow educators, children, and parents. Time and time again they show us, their peers and the families who they have the privilege of looking after their enthusiasm, their eagerness to learn and grow, and their unfaltering dedication to educating and developing small humans.

Ella

Ella Stanton

Inspire – Little Scholars Pillar Award 2023
Learn more about Ella

How long have you been an educator, Ella?
I have been an educator for four years now, and with Little Scholars since my placement when I began my certificate 3 at TAFE.

How did you start your career?
I had been looking at Little Scholars as a centre for my daughter since I was pregnant and fell in love with it from the get-go. Since beginning to have my daughter at the centre, I saw the love and care that the educators gave the children. Working with children had always been on my agenda as I used to study to be a music teacher and knew I could do so much more as an early childhood educator to assist the children in excelling in all areas before beginning “big school.”

What did being recognised for the inspire award mean to you?
The award completely blindsighted me as I turn up to work each day just to do my best for these little humans so to be recognised for my relationship with the children in my centre was so special to me and really instilled my role within the company and the importance I hold alongside my other educators in this industry.

Ella’s nomination
Ella is an educator with the Little Scholars Deception Bay campus, which recently was assessed Exceeding under the National Quality Framework for Early Childhood Education and Care.

In Ella’s nomination to us, it said, “Ella is an inspiration for all in the Deception Bay community. We had some outstanding feedback from the department through our assessment and rating process. Before the process even started, the assessor had mentioned the passion and authenticity observed in Ella’s interactions with our children, families and community. In the assessor’s words – ‘she could sit and watch Ella all day long.’ From one of Ella’s colleagues, ‘the educator she is, is who I aspire to be in my future teaching career. She is strong, but also so caring to each individual child.’

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Ellissa Gunn

Learn – Little Scholars Pillar Award 2023
Learn more about Ellissa

Ellissa is a lead educator at our Ormeau Village campus. She was named winner of the Pillar Award in the Learn category because she stepped up to become a lead educator, and we’re told she is always happy to keep learning from her peers and further her education in the sector.

How long have you been an educator?
I’ve been an educator since I was 16, but even younger I was at my mum’s centre helping out wherever I could.

How long have you been with Little Scholars?
I’ve been with Little Scholars for about 18 months, since Ormeau Village opened.

What made you want to become an educator?
I think just having the inspiration of my mum being in that environment, seeing what she does, seeing how she helped shape the children, it made me want to do it as well. Just seeing how I could help children as well.

What did winning the award mean to you?
I’m always trying my absolute best to do the best possible work I can do, so it meant that someone else was seeing that, that it was appreciated. It’s made it feel worth it!

What do you like about working with Little Scholars?
Just the support and having the creative freedom to do things that I couldn’t do at other places. Like taking them on Bush Kinder adventures and all these other fun things they get to do that they may not have the opportunity to do anywhere else. And everyone at head office as well, like Susan, Mel and Jae-them being so active in our centre, that’s something I really appreciate as well.

On the quick move from an assistant educator to lead educator, Ellissa says:
The support I had helped me to grow so fast, because if I was somewhere else and didn’t have the support, I probably wouldn’t have become lead, but the support from everyone about what I could do, what I would have to do, really helped when I stepped up.

Ellissa is finishing up her studies with her Cert III, then she’ll be moving onto her Graduate Diploma.
From the award submission: Ellissa has stepped up into her Lead role during last year and we have watched her grow from assistant to well-deserved Lead and take charge in her space, leading her colleagues while taking feedback on board and striving to excel.

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Jackie Lowe

Contribute – Little Scholars Pillar Award 2023
Learn more about Jackie

How long have you been in educator?
I’ve been an educator on and off for about 20 years. I’ve been with Little Scholars for a year now.

Hey that’s pretty good to get recognised in your first year!

I know it was so good!

What’s made you want to become an educator?
Just from being young and starting off babysitting, which I loved, and then Year 12 back then we had work experience and that was just going to a centre and from that first day I knew what I wanted to do. I just fell in love with it, and from then it was my goal to finish school and become an early childhood teacher

What is it now, 20 years on, that you still love about working in this sector?
It’s just the love of being around children, i’m just being with a team of educators, and I missed that like when I went away from it and did my business, I just missed it so much. It’s just working children just gives me so much joy.

All my children are older, are grown up, and it was just not a grandmother yet or anything it was just that feeling, it just going back into a centre and it just makes me so happy.

You won the Pillar Award for ‘contribute’ and you’re known as a ‘jack of all trades’, what do you do?
No job is too big or too small! I do the bus, I’m the after-school care educator, I can work in the kitchen, I can listen to other team members, there’s nothing that I won’t try! That’s just who I am, when I’m needed, I’ll do anything to help the team out.

Especially your first year at Little Scholars, what did winning an award mean to you?
My goodness, it was just so good, firstly I was surprised, but it was then good to know that the little things that I’m doing are noticed, I felt like, ‘Wow I am noticed!’ It just made me feel so happy knowing that all the jobs that I am doing people have recognised it, so yeah so then makes you feel like you are doing a great job!

I love working for Little Scholars. It’s an amazing company, I’ve worked with the other centres before, Little Scholars is just amazing and I’m happy to be there and helping out.

In Jackie’s nomination, campus manager Elise said, ‘Jackie is our jack of all trades! Jackie fits many hats at our campus. From driving the bus to being in the studios to going on vacation care, she wears her many hats with a smile on her face. Her bubbly nature and willingness to help the team wherever needed is admirable. We appreciate her dedication and consistent contribution to the campus.

Aleisha Relph

Aleisha Relph

Grow – Little Scholars Pillar Award 2023
Learn more about Aleisha

Ellissa is a lead educator at our Ormeau Village campus. She was named winner of the Pillar Award in the Learn category because she stepped up to become a lead educator, and we’re told she is always happy to keep learning from her peers and further her education in the sector.

How long have you been an educator?
I’ve been an educator since I was 16, but even younger I was at my mum’s centre helping out wherever I could.

How long have you been with Little Scholars?
I’ve been with Little Scholars for about 18 months, since Ormeau Village opened.

What made you want to become an educator?
I think just having the inspiration of my mum being in that environment, seeing what she does, seeing how she helped shape the children, it made me want to do it as well. Just seeing how I could help children as well.

What did winning the award mean to you?
I’m always trying my absolute best to do the best possible work I can do, so it meant that someone else was seeing that, that it was appreciated. It’s made it feel worth it!

What do you like about working with Little Scholars?
Just the support and having the creative freedom to do things that I couldn’t do at other places. Like taking them on Bush Kinder adventures and all these other fun things they get to do that they may not have the opportunity to do anywhere else. And everyone at head office as well, like Susan, Mel and Jae-them being so active in our centre, that’s something I really appreciate as well.

On the quick move from an assistant educator to lead educator, Ellissa says:
The support I had helped me to grow so fast, because if I was somewhere else and didn’t have the support, I probably wouldn’t have become lead, but the support from everyone about what I could do, what I would have to do, really helped when I stepped up.

Ellissa is finishing up her studies with her Cert III, then she’ll be moving onto her Graduate Diploma.
From the award submission: Ellissa has stepped up into her Lead role during last year and we have watched her grow from assistant to well-deserved Lead and take charge in her space, leading her colleagues while taking feedback on board and striving to excel.

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Rachel Ferguson

Little Scholars Ashmore Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Managers Choice

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Leilani Fulton

Little Scholars Ashmore Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

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Felicity Traynor

Little Scholars Burleigh Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

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Jodie Dzanir

Little Scholars Burleigh Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

Deception Bay

Hayley Yates

Little Scholars Deception Bay Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

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Ashley Newett

Little Scholars Deception Bay Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

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Maria Fierro

Little Scholars George St Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

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Amanda Fitisemanu

Little Scholars George St Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

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Natalee Rixon

Little Scholars Nerang Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Managers Choice

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Jekoba Lino

Little Scholars Nerang Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

Ormeau

Mahtika Atherton

Little Scholars Ormeau Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

Ormeau (2)

Skye Bassett

Little Scholars Ormeau Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

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Kim Hall

Little Scholars Ormeau 2 Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

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Sheridan Palmer

Little Scholars Ormeau 2 Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

Ormeau Village (2)

Shaylee Campbell

Little Scholars Ormeau Village Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

Ormeau Village

Amanda Olsen

Little Scholars Ormeau Village Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

Melina

Melina Solway

Little Scholars Redland Bay South Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Managers Choice

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Holly Hall

Little Scholars Redland Bay South Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

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Lauren Bachmann

Little Scholars Redland Bay Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

Redland Bay

Rachel Clough

Little Scholars Redland Bay Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

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Jodie Gray

Little Scholars Pacific Pines Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

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Brooke Gilbert

Little Scholars Pacific Pines Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

Stapylton

Gordon Payne

Little Scholars Stapylton Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

Coming

Teagan Mitchell

Little Scholars Stapylton Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

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Anelle Britz

Little Scholars Yatala Campus
Educator of the year – Campus Manager Choice

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Tori Banks

Little Scholars Yatala Campus
Educator of the year – Peer Choice

We are excited to welcome Susan Cooper, our new group Pedagogical Leader for Little Scholars School of Early Learning.

Susan

Susan will support educators to guide and influence children’s love of learning by fostering family engagement, ensuring fidelity to Little Scholars curricular philosophy, using data to evaluate the effectiveness of the learning program, and ensure we are exceeding standards to optimise learning environments and prepare children for successful futures.

Through pedagogical leadership, Susan hopes to raise the benchmark to overall quality of teaching and recognises that providing children with strong foundations for ongoing learning and development is underpinned by a strong pedagogical practice.

Pedagogy is a form of teaching strategies in the practice of educating. It is the techniques, strategies and approach taken by educators to let learning and development to take place. Pedagogy refers to the interactive process between the teacher, the learner and the learning environment and provides reason to the design of learning spaces, materials, and resources on offer. Pedagogical Leadership supports educators in relating their pedagogy to content knowledge and educational theories.

Susan’s primary role will be to provide leadership to pedagogy and support educators in relating their pedagogy to content knowledge and educational theories. Susan will be working across the 13 Little Scholars Early Learning Campuses mentoring and coaching our educational leaders to implement curriculum delivery. Susan will inspire educators to employ new approaches to their teaching against up-to-date research, which will shape the quality of experiences and interactions across our campuses.

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Susan has worked in the Early Childhood Sector for more than 16 years and has extensive knowledge in the field of Pedagogical Practices. Having worked in many fields within the Education sector, from operating a family day care, to being an educator within long day care sector as well as outside school hour care services, through to management and leadership.

“To take on this role is exciting as I can share my passion, influencing pedagogy approaches and practices and place emphasis on children’s play to promote continuous child development and quality outcomes for children,” she says.

Susan is passionate about advocating for children’s rights and is a firm believer of a child-centred approach and that the quality of interactions between adults and children play a fundamental role in stimulating early learning.

According to Jae Fraser, founder of Little Scholars School of Early Learning, pedagogical leadership is about leading or guiding pedagogical practice, supporting Little Scholars educators in their work with children and families, and translating the Little Scholars values and principles into practice.

What Is After School Restraint Collapse?

Why do our children sometimes express some big bursts of negative moods after they come home from a seemingly fun day at childcare? This could be due to after school restraint collapse. Meanwhile, you expect them to come home happy and excited to tell you all about their day of crafts, books, playtime and outings, after all, you often get reports that your child was an angel all day. But when he or she comes home, that angel seems to have taken those wings and flown away, being replaced with something not so angelic.

Some child experts call it ‘after school restraint collapse’, and it seems to happen because children hold it together all day in childcare. Children use a lot of energy being well-behaved, following direction, sitting still, retaining information, and all of this without their primary attachment figures, their parents/caregivers. It can also simply be that some children meltdown because they are tired or overstimulated. Wanting to learn more about Little Scholars and how we deal with these big emotions? Contact us today.

Why Do Children Wait Until They Are Home?

This leaves your child’s best opportunity to release their emotions when they get to a safe place, their home. Those emotions can take the shape of crying fits, whining, screaming, disrespect or physically acting out to parents or siblings.

“I always say to parents, ‘do you have a best friend, someone you let all your emotions out when you see them? You are this to your child and when they see you after a big, busy day at Kindy, it all comes out,’” says Libby Kissell, a lead educator with our Redland Bay South campus.

“Rest assured they had an amazing day, but they let it all out when they see you because YOU are their person, their safe zone.”

Young children haven’t yet developed the essential brain wiring or had the necessary life experience to be able to calm themselves down from big feeling states, which is why they experience such frequent meltdowns. They know they can do this at home because they’re in a place where they’re loved and supported.

Little Scholars Can Support You With After School Restraint Collapse

Your child is loved and supported by our team at Little Scholars, talk to us if you’re struggling and we can think and discuss how to make things easier for your little one.

“As an adult, we come home from a big day at work and we just want time to ourselves to zone out and not have to think,” says Holly Medbury, an educator from our Stapylton campus.

“We might even get annoyed if people want our attention, kids feel the same, but often have difficulty expressing it. Children are little people with big emotions, they too need some time to ‘chill out’ or a friend to be there and hug, with no expectations. It’s just reassurance for parents out there that they are doing an amazing job and providing useful strategies to help children cope with their big emotions.”

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5 Tips For Parents Dealing With After School Restraint Collapse

1. Comforting Method

You can send them to their centre with a comfort toy or blanket that they can reach for when they need it. You could also send them with a picture of their family, or a note in their bag telling them how proud you are of them and how much you love them

2. Spending A Few More Minutes Before School

Spend an extra five to 10 minutes with them before they start their day at Little Scholars. Just a few connected minutes with your child can make a significant difference in their day

3. Future Planning For After School

Have a conversation with them on the way to childcare or when you get to their centre that focuses on what they can look forward to after you pick them up later, maybe that conversation looks like, ‘When I come to get you, would you like to go to the park or go pick out some new books to read at the library?’

4. Bring A Snack After School

Bring a snack for the trip home, sometimes hunger can be distracting for them and can stir up emotions.

5. Listen To Your Children’s Needs

When you pick them up, maybe all they need is a big reassuring hug. Maybe they need quiet. Maybe they’d like to tune out to some music they enjoy for a few minutes. Maybe they need to relax on a park bench or burn some energy at the playground. Follow their lead and take some time before asking questions about their day.

Again, feel free to talk to your educators about what’s happening at home. We have an open-door policy and we’re here for you. Your child’s educators, after spending time with your little one, may have specific ideas on how to help your child or can try to dedicate some quality time with your child to help them relax and feel cared for.

By understanding a little better why there are strong feelings coming from your child after a day of childcare, you are better armed to handle after school restraint collapse or even moderate reactions before their start.

For more information:

Whether your child is starting childcare for the first time or joining us at Little Scholars, change can be intimidating for both the child and parents!

We hope you’ve taken advantage of our playdates so that the centre your child is joining isn’t brand new to him or her. The purpose of our playdates is to familiarise your child (and you!) with their new educators, peers and surroundings, and help our educators get to know your child.

Let your educator know about any settling techniques or routines your child is used to for sleep, as well as your expectations and discipline.

In the days leading up to joining us

We recommend you talk with your child about what will happen at the centre in the days leading up to their start. Remind them about their playdates, such as if you remember educators or peers’ names, or one part of the daycare they may remember (our playgrounds are always a hit!).

Get their help in packing their daycare bag. Keeping your child an active participant in getting ready our campus helps them get used to the idea. Especially if there’s a special toy or blanket in there for them, they’ll be comforted knowing it’s there if they need it.

First day

Try to keep goodbyes short. Be calm. Of course, respond to your child’s distress and comfort them, but be firm and reassure them you’ll be coming back.

Spend extra time with them to reconnect when you return and ask them about their day. This is also an opportunity to ask your educator for some useful questions that can help encourage your child to open up about their day’s experience.

Packing your child’s bag:
  • A sun-safe hat that protects your child’s face, neck and ears. A Little Scholar sun-safe hat will be given to your child when they enrol, you can include this or an alternative hat each day
  • Drink bottle
  • Sleeping sheet set or blanket and a pillow for nap time. We do not allow pillows in cots per safe sleeping recommendations
  • Change of clothes as our play can get messy, and underwear (especially if a child is toilet-training or three years and up). Always make sure appropriate clothing is packed depending on weather/season. As children are outside every day and participate in Forest School each week, we recommend longer-sleeved t-shirts and pants that protects little bodies from the sun, as well as closed-toe shoes with good grips
  • Bib or two if needed
  • Sunscreen is applied at our centres, but you are welcome to bring an alternative if your child is sensitive skin or is allergic
  • Mosquito repellent if you wish
  • A comfort item such as a toy or blanket
  • Dummy (if required) in a sealed, named container. Sterilised bottles with pre-boiled water and formula in a tin or in formula dividers
  • Wet bag – we play in rain and sprinklers, so something to contain wet items
  • Feel free to bring in photos of your family that we can display around our centre, so when your child is engaged in learning they know you’re always there. You can also bring in cultural pieces that represent your family – we love having a piece of your home in ours.

Don’t forget, we’re here for you too, parents! If you have any questions about how your child is settling in, please don’t hesitate to call your campus or have a conversation with your lead educator at any time.

More information

Is your child transitioning studios at one of our Little Scholars campuses? Check out this blog post with tips to help make a smooth transition.
For more information on how to settle your Little Scholar in, check out this article.

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Come and see the Little Scholars difference

Let us hold your hand and help looking for a child care centre. Leave your details with us and we’ll be in contact to arrange a time for a ‘Campus Tour’ and we will answer any questions you might have!

Come and see the Little Scholars difference

Let us hold your hand and help looking for a child care centre. Leave your details with us and we’ll be in contact to arrange a time for a ‘Campus Tour’ and we will answer any questions you might have!