Charlestown East Educational Preschool is a private Child Care Centre located in Keal St, Charlestown that has maintained high quality care for both children and families for the past 30 years.
Owners Frances and Nick Chomyn purchased Charlestown East Educational Pre-school in 1999 (at that stage an already well established pre-school in the area) and set about providing a unique and secure learning environment for children that goes beyond the norm.
Frances, a qualified early childhood teacher who is originally from New Zealand, always dreamed of owning and operating a childcare centre, while Nick, a construction engineer with BHP, would have been happy to spend his days writing music and surfing. Instead Nick decided to forego the surfing part to qualify in childcare and join Frances in her new venture.Sixteen years later and the preschool is a shining example of best practice in early childcare education and intentional teaching methods, providing children with the best educational start and equipping them with the required skills, attitude and confidence for school.
This includes being able to confidently carry out the tasks of dressing and undressing, asking for assistance, confidently approaching and relating to their peers, opening their lunch box and feeding themselves.With a license for 30 children aged between 3 years and school age, the centre is structured to meet modern and traditional teaching methods in compliance with the Department of Community Service – Children Service.
This small group size also comes with the advantage of providing the children with diverse learning opportunities in a modern environment.Charlestown East Educational Pre-school provide the best start to early learning - they understand that children, even very young children, are often more competent, more intelligent and more capable than they are often given credit for. In support of this, Nick and Frances ensure that each child is provided with a variety of creative experiences and material to encourage self-expression and exploration.
Each child is also encouraged to make choices, participate in play and to develop and maintain relationships.The children are also provided with a learning framework that includes experiences and opportunities that encourage them to acquire skills, attitudes and sensitivities that allow them to make the most of their potential. Importantly, a literary programme is also in place ensuring the children get an early start in elementary reading and sounding.
As part of the program, all children are provided with a literacy book, a sound book, craft book and a book of theirparticular interests. The latter allows the teachingstaff to identify the specific interests of the child andfurther develop those interests.Each day is clearly divided into specific activities with the morning dedicated to learning activities and the afternoon filled with activities that involve constructing, socialising and playing.With a library corner, block corner, family corner and a corner well equipped with puzzles and computers, the children are spoilt for choice when it comes to their daily activities.
Add to this the fact that each child has a weekly task sheet which includes either a learning activity such as the lifecycle of the frog, a family activity or a community activity such as beingsun smart.Other regular programs include visits from medical nurses, staff, fire department personnel and police who talk to the children about community issues and also safety issues.
The staff at the centre are all experienced/qualified early childhood educators, who focus on a school readiness program all year around rather than just child care. Staff on site each day include an early childhood teacher, 3 diploma qualified teachers and a trainee teacher.For Frances and Nick, who in the past have also designed 2 other childcare centres, running the facility is not without its challenges as they are governed (and also restricted by) guidelines and procedures that do not always benefit the child.
Frances and Nick would love to have the opportunity to share their school readiness and intentional teaching program with other Childcare Centres and for them it is disappointing that the relevant authorities have not taken the time and necessary steps to recognise the success they are having with their program and see how effective it is.