What’s happening at GAP in Term 3…

This term our lovely Teaching Team has lined up great incursions for our Mon/Tue and Thu/Fri classes, including fabulous music lessons with our wonderful educator Michelle, who specifically designs the lessons for children aged 3-5 years.

Furthermore, we had our lovely Anke Maria from the Ginninderra Catchment Group visit the GAP. As part of their highly engaging educational program ‘FrogWatch’, Anke Maria captivated the young audience by telling stories about the frogs’ habitat and development whilst also offering plenty of hands-on activities which the children thoroughly enjoyed.

Thank you Anke Maria for your visit and the fun that you brought to GAP.  

TURNER SCOUT HALL PLAYGROUND UPDATE 2.0

In addition to our playground make-over which took place in February this year, GAP has recently seen a transformation of their sandpit, which has been a complete redesign of the existing one, very much to the children’s delight.

Many thanks to the talented carpenter Aaron Knudsen for this amazing and delightful addition to our outdoor space. The sandpit now functions as a modern outdoor kitchen with heaps of counter top space for children to cook and bake delicious “Pizza”, “Sandkuchen” and serving up tasty “Cappuccinos”.

Despite is functionality of keeping the sand now in the sandpit, it also hosts a range of Dinosaur fossils which are keenly excavated by our young explorers. This further addition makes our outdoor space an even more fun and engaging space which the children truly appreciate.

***JOB VACANCY AT GAP***

We are looking for:

  • German-speaking educator to be one of our Head Teachers and to join a small team of dedicated professionals at one of the best Playschools in Canberra. The German-Australian Playschool (GAP) offers a fantastic program in German in a loving caring environment. 

What we offer: 

  • A permanent part-time role, with immediate start
  • Great work-life balance with hours from 9:05am to 3:45pm during ACT school terms and open for limited days during school term breaks.
  • In addition, teachers are paid for preparation time. 
  • Spielwelt pays above Award rates and is an exceptionally supportive employer.

The minimum requirements: 

  • Be great with children aged 3-5 years old
  • Have or be eligible for a Working with Vulnerable People Card 
  • Have a valid work permit, Permanent Residency or Australian Citizenship
  • Hold a Diploma or Degree qualification in Early Childhood Education (ECE) or Children’s services, Sozialpädagogik, or similar.
  • Be fluent in German 

The ideal candidate will also:

  • Have prior Children’s services or early childhood teaching experience
  • Be a native German speaker and be passionate about German culture
  • Impress us with an inspiring session delivered at our morning circle (as part of your interview process)

For more information, please see our website https://spielwelt.org.au/

If you would like to be part of our wonderful team, please send all enquiries and CVs to Katrin on gap.director@spielwelt.org.au or call us on 0481 590 656

Lantern Walk 2022 – Plan Your Visit

The Turner Scout Hall and surrounding Haig Park will come alive with bobbing lanterns, excited children, traditional lantern walk songs, families socialising and delicious food on Saturday 18 June 2022, from 4:30pm to 6:30pm.

Bring cash for food and drinks: $5.00 per German sausage; $3.00 for a baked potato; $2.00 for each mug of Gluehwein, Kinderpunsch or soup; and gold coin donations for each serving of the other delicious foods. Water is free. (Participants are encouraged to bring a plate of finger-foods to contribute to the tables. Members: see the volunteer sign up list.)

Dress warmly and wear footwear suitable for walking on wet grass.

Covid safety rules apply: Stay home if you are unwell. Distancing of 1.5m between different families at the event.

The order of events are:

4:30pm Arrive, socialise, browse the children’s clothing swap table. Food tables and BBQs begin to serve.

5:00pm MC gives official welcome while folk enjoy food, drink and each other’s company.

5:25pm All gather to sing lantern walk songs, as food tables and BBQs start packing up.

5:45pm The parade commences.

5:55pm Parade forms a circle amongst the trees; young children’s parade inside the protective circle of adults.

6:10pm When the children’s parade finishes, adults should STAY IN THEIR CIRCLE FORMATION until we have reunited all children with their parents.

6:15pm Parade arrives back at the scout hall and assembles at the stage (behind the scout hall) to watch the Scouts’ play about Sankt Martin (who is associated with the lantern walk in Germany).

6:30pm Pack up and head home. If everyone tidies up at least three items, the job will soon be done.

6:30-8:30pm For those people with older children who want to stay on for the “after party” (and help with the clean up) we will keep our little bonfire going.

Read more about the lantern walk event here!

Over 3000 Volunteer Hours

Pfadfinder Scout Group will be presenting a special Certificate of Appreciation to the parents and families of Spielwelt this week.

Since 2008, Spielwelt parents have contributed over 3000 hours of volunteer work to improve the Turner Scout Hall, and the number of hours keeps growing.

The hours include time spent planning, fundraising, managing capital works projects, and attending annual working bees to perform routine maintenance and contribute to major improvements.

Spielwelt and Pfadfinder enjoy a close relationship, with each helping the other to create a wonderful experience in our programs and a safe and friendly space at the Turner Scout Hall for all our children and their families.

Danke schoen!

Used Clothing Drive

Keen to be green?

Give your used textiles another life

Textile waste is a massive problem in Australia. On average, we each send around 23kg of textiles into landfill each year!

As our next ‘Keen to be Green’ activity, the Spielwelt committee are organising a bulk collection of used clothes and other textiles to send to Upparel for re-using, repurposing and recycling.

If you have old clothes, shoes or other textiles that aren’t suitable for donating to charities, this is your chance to free up some space in your cupboard and make a little contribution to a more sustainable future 😊

Just bring your old textiles to the hall on or before Federweisser Fest on 19 March 2022 and the committee will do the packing and shipping.

To cover the small collection fee charged by Upparel, we’re asking for donations of $2.50 for each kg of textiles you bring (it doesn’t have to be exact, but this gives you a rough idea of what we’ll need to cover costs).

For each kg we send to Upparel, we’ll prevent 3–4 kg of greenhouse gases from polluting our atmosphere!

One lucky contributor will win a $25 credit to purchase some awesome socks made of recycled materials.

What you can bring:

Clothing items (jeans, shirts, coats, etc)
Hats
Wireless Bras
Swimwear
Socks and stockings
Shoes
Linen (bedding, towels, tea towels, etc)
Fabric mattress protectors (not waterproof/plastic)
Fabric off-cuts and sewing scraps
Fabric couch covers and curtains
Bathers & Swimwear
Wetsuits

What you can’t bring:

Unwashed tems
Underwear
Carpet
Duvets/Doonas
Pillows/Cushions
Bags (handbags, duffel bags, etc)
Soft Toys
Wired Bras

Please make sure that everything you bring is washed! (Shoes should be brushed clean).

If you have empty boxes to donate (ideal size 46 x 42 x 41cm), that would also be much appreciated.

If you have kids clothes that are still in good shape, save them up for our next clothing swap.

Any questions? Contact Emily on keen.to.be.green.coordinator@spielwelt.org.au

Turner Scout Hall playground mural

The children returned to their programs to see that their playground had been completely transformed by the addition of a beautiful mural.

Many thanks to Byrd & Hoon for this amazing and delightful addition to our hall. The Fachwerkhaus theme (from the west and south sides of the building) now carries on into the playground side… with the addition of ivy and a lot of birds and tiny critters.

The birds all feature in popular German children’s songs and rhymes. It is a lot of fun to try to find them all hiding in the ivy.

Our shed has been transformed into a barn.

There is a rainbow pan pipe which makes different sounds when you tap on the holes at the bottom. Out of the pan pipe, float a few magical mirror bubbles. The lower-level mirror bubbles are big enough for children to see themselves (especially helpful when rubbing in their sunscreen).

There is also, of course, der kleine Onkel (the horse from Pippi Langstrumpf), who looks like he lives in the scout hall!

The playground is an especially beautiful space to play in now.

This wonderful mural is the work of local muralists and artists, Byrd and Hanna Hoyne. We are very grateful to them for really transforming the building for us all.

It looks like one of our groups who hire the hall, All Round Good Hounds, also heartily approve of the new look for the hall…

Working Bees 2022

Many thanks to the GAP parents who came out in numbers to the working bees in January. We accomplished a lot, cleaned, cleaned, cleaned, inventoried, sorted toys, repaired equipment, maintained the buildlng, designed and planned. It is an exciting time of the year when a lot of the dreams on the teachers and committee wish lists come true!

Parents also help assemble a big set of Schultueten for the incoming GAP class, with lots of useful and fun items inside, including these beautiful bees wax wraps made especially for GAP (carefully folded by one of the children).

Thank you everyone! Many hands make light work, and your input is highly appreciated.

GAP turns 15

The GAP children enjoyed some delicious German cake after lunch today to celebrate the German Australian Playschool being 15 years old this year!

We have had an amazing first 15 years. We started in Scullin with two staff, offering one and a half days a week. We now have a delightful facility in Turner, employing five teachers, a director, a finance adminstration person, and two cleaners; and we operate two classes over four days a week.

We look forward to the next 15 years! The committee is undertaking a strategic financial review this year as part of our “best practice” governance and to ensure we continue to steer our organisation in the right direction. We are grateful to the parents who volunteer on the committee and share their expertise and set our policies, fees and directions.

Many thanks to Janne for the delicious cake!

A-Z of Spielwelt in 2021

Here is an A-Z for Spielwelt in 2021, created by our fabulous President Tobias!

A is for ACT Health, who used our hall three times as a vaccination pop-up clinic. The staff even left behind a lovely note in German for us!

B is for Bilingual Education Alliance seminars: our Präsident, Tobias, spoke at two ACTBEA seminars this year on “Raising Children in More than One Language” and “A Celebration of Languages“.

C is for the Committee. Thank you so much to our wonderful 2021 Spielwelt Committee: Christiane N, Emily K, Janne L, Julia B, Lisa St, Minh-Tam N, Salim M and Tobias B! They make sure that this fabulous organisation remains the best it can be, by providing their time, wisdom and perspectives on all things governance.

is for Deft Financial Management. Spielwelt made only a slight operating loss this year, due to covid. This is about 2% of our annual budget, and is pretty incredibly given the pandemic circumstances. In addition, we spent around $35,000 on capital works to improve our hall and playground. Special thanks to Margie, our amazing Finance Admin person, who keeps everything running smoothly.

E is for Environmentally Friendly, which is a very important element of Spielwelt’s ethos. As part of our continuous pursuit of being Keen to Be Green, we banned non-biodegradable craft items and small plastic toys, ran two clothing swaps, decommissioned the second fridge, and looked into more sustainable cleaning products.

F is for Friederike, who is moving to the coast after 10 wonderful years with GAP. She has such a beautiful energy with the children and her colleagues, and she will be very sorely missed by all.

G is for GAP (ist meine Schule), which celebrated its 15th year in 2021! GAP continues to delight children and parents alike, from the very first day of Schultüte, to Karneval, German Easter traditions, picnics, a lantern walk, nature park play days, music lessons, special guests, concerts, excursions, all the way through the year to the ceremonial ribbon archway at graduation. Special thanks to teachers Gerda, Friederike, Lisa3, and Birgit, and relief assistant Amelia, in 2021.

is for Harmonie Connect. Committee Member Christiane spoke on behalf of Spielwelt at an event hosted at the Harmonie Club in January. The event allowed people to hear all about the amazing German, Austrian, Swiss and German language organisations from across the ACT, including us!

I is for “Ich geh mit meiner Lanterne”, which could be heard again through the crisp night air of Haig Park at our Lantern Walk in June. An estimated 200-250 parents and children joined in the festivities and shone light into the dark winter!

J is for Juice from Grapes, Fermented Quickly aka Federweisser! In March, we were able to celebrate our first combined event since 2019, with a glass of delicious Federweisser, a slice of Zwiebelkuchen and the warmth of the fire barrels.

is for Konzerte: It was such a joy to be able to celebrate the end of the year with our GAP Konzerte. The children enjoyed singing a sample of their repertoire on the new deck in the playground. After our encore, the final act was having parents and children dancing and singing along to the highly popular Tschu-Tschu-Wa!

L is for Lockdown: we made it through another one, we hope we won’t have to go through any more, and think that this Aranda School sign put it best…

M is for Mäuse, die schlau sind: our Schlaumäuse program again provided wonderful play-based German lessons for children in Kindergarten and Year 1. Special thanks to Stephanie for her amazing work that she does for this program.

N is for Nikolaus, who was able to visit GAP, Pfadfinder and Spiel und Spaß again this year. All of the children left their shoes out in the hope of receiving Zuckerstangen, and also were able to show Nikolaus how they can jump, sing, dance, run and read poems. Nikolaus returned the favour to some children by showing how he can (almost) fly! Special thanks to Tim and Tobias for helping guide the good saint our way this year.

is for the Online Resources that kept us all a little bit saner during lockdown. There are so many ideas in the Spielwelt Remote Learning pages to keep up your children’s exposure to German over the holidays. Plus don’t forget to check out our online German language children’s media list and the Spiel und Spass Spotify playlist!

P is for Pfadfinder, who have been busy this year learning about German traditions, culture and history through fun games, as well as going on hikes, canoeing, orienteering, helping others, baking to raise funds for charity, learning to service their cars (our L- and P-Platers), making amazing nature art, floating home-made boats, treasure hunts and LOTS more. Special thanks to our leaders: Jens, Wolfgang, Stephanie, Struppi, Melanie, Alice and Lisa, and all of the Adult Helpers who make this such a great program.

Q is for Quality Children’s Services, with the successful renewal of our Children’s Services Licence for another three years. Special thanks to Lisa for the mammoth effort that goes into this process.

R is for Raises for Staff: The committee is aiming to increase staff wages in recognition of the important, and often under-valued, work that childhood educators do every day in caring for and educating our little people, and the big responsibility they take on.

is for Spielgruppen: Spiel und Spaß, and Spiel und Sport. We have had such fun growing and playing together this year, whether in person or on Zoom. Next year, we will launch Spiel und Spannung, in addition to continuing Spiel und Spaß. Particular thanks to Seyhan, Doris and Meike for all of their wonderful work in organising the groups and fantastic activities, whether online or in person.

T is for Teachers: we all know that we’ve got the best teachers at GAP, and they’ve won yet another award to prove it! We also welcomed the fun-loving Toby to our GAP staff in 2021. In the words of one of our little people: “I like Toby, he is richtig gut.”

is for Upgrades to the Hall, which included the Black Forest Retreat in the north-east corner and the amazing murals around the hall. We’re also looking forward to seeing the new fans in the hall and our new sandpit, both to be installed in early 2022.

V is for Volunteers – without them Spielwelt wouldn’t exist! A huge thank you to all of our volunteers in 2021, whether you helped lead one of our programs, kept the hall in top shape, helped out at one of our fabulous events, or did the little, often-unnoticed but super important things to make sure everything we do runs smoothly.

W is for Wolfgang (der Wolf), who took over leading the Joey Scouts from the wonderful Alice this year, has been on the leadership training course, and brought such joy to our Joeys.

is for X-mal, for the countless times that you checked in, washed your hands, wore a mask, kept socially distanced and stayed home when you were even just a little bit sick to make sure that we all remained safe. Thank you!

Y is for Yummy Mangoes: despite smaller trays due to a lower harvest, we still raised funds for Spielwelt and filled big and little tummies alike!

is for Zweitausendzweiundzwanzig! We can’t wait to see you all again for more fun next year, whatever comes our way!

Spielwelt