Spielwelt German Parents Association is a not for profit organisation running children’s programs in German in Canberra
Do you love children 3-5 years old? Do you speak German? Do you want to work in Canberra? Then the German Australian Playschool is the place for you!
We are regularly recruiting both permanent part time and casual staff! Check out our current vacancies, or contact us if you are interested in working with us, even if we don’t currently have a position available. Depending on our enrolments, staff returning to Germany or going on sick/parental leave, we often need additional staff to call upon.
All staff must have a visa to work in Australia, and undergo a Working With Vulnerable People check and have all vaccinations up to date. We like to hire a mix of permanent local staff and overseas visiting staff, to keep our programs fresh and up to date with what is happening in German-speaking Europe as well as covering the Australian education requirements.
The minimum requirements for educators at the GAP are to:
- be wonderful with children aged 3-5 years old
- be a good team player
- be eligible for (or already hold) a Working with Vulnerable People Card
- be prepared to undertake (or already hold) a First Aid certificate in Australia
- be a permanent resident, Australian citizen or have a valid work permit
The ideal candidate will also have:
- prior children’s services or early childhood teaching experience
- native German-speaking fluency
To be a Head Teacher at the German Australian Playschool, you need qualifications (or part of your qualification) in Early Childhood Education, or a Diploma in Children’s Services, or an equivalent overseas qualification. You must also speak excellent German and love working with children 3-5 years old.
We are always pleased to hear from German-speaking teachers who would like to go on our relief teaching list as well. This is a great way to work towards getting permanent work at the German Australian Playschool.
If you are applying from outside of Australia, you must have experience in a childcare or kindergarten environment and be a “Staatlich anerkannter ErzieherIn oder KindergartnerIn“. Sometimes a “SozialpedagokikIn” qualification can be accepted.
We seek to employ assistant teachers who are qualified in early childhood education or childcare. Other candidates may also be considered, when qualified or experienced staff are not available, and the candidate is deemed to be highly suitable for the position.
Practical / Praktikum / Internship
We do take German-speaking teachers wanting to do a practical (Praktikum). Usually these teachers volunteer for one to two weeks with us.
We regularly have lovely German-speaking volunteers come and spend some time with us. There are opportunities to read to and have fun with our lovely children!
Applying from overseas
The first thing to check is whether you would be eligible for a visa which allows you to work in Australia. The most common ones are a partner visa or a working holiday visa (subclass 417). Staff on the 417 visa can work up to 6 months with us.
If you are coming from overseas to work or volunteer with us, you must have the means to support yourself financially while you are here.
Teachers and volunteers coming from overseas need to organise their own accommodation and food.
It is a good idea to get an idea of the prices of accommodation and food, before you come to Australia. One of our local universities publishes reliable information about the cost of living in Canberra.
Read what Sarah (our Head Teacher in 2009) wrote (auf Deutsch) about her experience coming from Germany to work with us.
As we can only offer part-time employment, a GAP job itself is often not enough to support you financially to live independently, and you may need a Nebenjob.
You could perhaps consider becoming an AuPair (search for the Canberra AuPair group on Facebook or ask us if any of our families who need an AuPair).
We can also put you in touch with our friends at ACT German Language School and Das Zentrum. They offer German language classes for children and adults, and are often looking for new language teachers.
Babysitting is always in demand – in German and English – and all kinds of other casual work can usually be found (start looking on GumTree or Facebook or Seek). Our families need Babysitters for Before or After School Care as well as ad hoc support during the week including as German Tutors.
Volunteering as a Scout Leader or Adult Helper
We are always keen to hear from volunteers who can help us with our Pfadfinder program, including if you don’t speak any German. Find out more here.
Our interview process
The teacher interview process has three parts: education, care and practicalities.
- Firstly, the education: The candidate and a committee member come in to join our morning circle, the teacher does roll call and introduces the candidate to the class. If you are applying as a head teacher, then you will get to deliver a short structured education session of some sort to the children. This can be anything you like: a game, a new song, a Bewegungslied, a Bewegungsgeschichte, a craft or little activity to last about ten minutes or longer if multiple activities. If the weather is nice, it could be outdoors. Some candidates do a single activity, and some do a couple of activities based on a theme (for example, a song about butterflies, a butterfly dance and then a craft to make them). Check with us first about craft activities as the teacher may already have something planned that week. Do whatever makes you shine.
- Secondly, the care: When the morning circle has finished, the children go to wash their hands and then come to sit at the table. The candidate is observed in how they interact with the children in this non-structured setting. How helpful are they, how do the children respond to them, are they aware of safety issues and dealing with them promptly, how suitable is their tone and how natural is their language, how do they respond to children who are not being considerate of others (and are pushing or being too loud, for example), and so on. The best tip is to be yourself and interact naturally with the children.
- Thirdly, the practicalities: The candidate, committee member and director meet in another room or outdoors, for the usual interview style questions. The questions are usually about past experience, availability, any workplace support or flexibility you would like to request, how you would handle difficult situations, how you handle children displaying challenging behaviour, the best/worst parts of the job in your opinion, and so on.
After this, the candidate can head home, and the committee member and director consult with the other staff and children about their feedback. They prepare a little report to be considered by the committee who will make the hiring decision.
We check references, WWVP cards and immunisation status. Once all candidates have been interviewed, the committee meet to consider a short-list and they choose the successful candidate/s. All candidates are then informed of the outcome.