Duncan and Jacita of Wiradjuri Echoes aboriginal education group always give us such an energetic and powerful presentation. We learn about artefacts, we laugh at Duncan’s funny jokes, we sing Wiradjuri songs with Jacita to Duncan’s traditional music, we get to practice saying Wiradjuri words, we hear the rainbow snake creation story while Duncan draws us our own Aboriginal artwork to colour in, and once we have our warrior or berry princess face paint on we dance like kangaroos and rainbow snakes. It is a fabulous event!
The GAP children were delighted to meet Louie, a super friendly dog, who came to wag his tail for the children and answer all their dog related (and many non-dog related) questions!
Organisations across Canberra were invited to host a little bit of Floriade in their own communities in 2020.
Our venturer scouts had recently designed, created and installed window boxes for us, so we had the perfect spot for some Spring flowers.
The GAP children got in on the action too, and planted a few water coloured paper flowers in our triangular garden in the playground.
We even had our own Floriade sign outside the Turner Scout Hall! Imagine that!
At the GAP, we absolutely love the arboretum and our favourite guide, Heather.
This year we decided to stay a whole day there, so we had six glorious hours amongst the trees, in the sunshine and fresh air. We had perfect weather for our excursion too.
We got to play on the acorn playground, have a tour with Heather, hear a garden fairy story, have morning tea on the deck with sweeping views of green hills below, imagine ourselves as tiny folk in the bonsai garden, smell apple pie plants in the sensory garden, have lunch in the dappled shade amongst beautiful flowers and aromatic plants, see birds’ nests, go for long walks, relax on picnic blankets under trees in the STEP gardens watching fluffy clouds drift slowly by, see a frog pond, climb a hill, learn about cuckoos and magpies and butterbum birds.
In short, it was a wonderful day.
Would we go again? JAWOHL!! In a heart beat!
We are loving having the children back at GAP. We missed them during the COVID pause.
There is plenty to keep us busy: craft, picnics in the park, exploring the joys of a leaf blower (on its lowest setting, of course!), making sandbox lasagne, getting back on the slide and the trikes and scooters, chasing each other, playing hide and seek, singing together and much more.
Thanks everyone, for your patience during the COVID-19 pause.
We are returning to operations, with increased hygiene protocols, as follows:
GAP: Monday 18 May 2020
Schlaumaeuse: Wed 3 June 2020
Spiel und Spass: Wed 24 June 2020
Pfadfinder: Monday 20 July 2020
The maximum occupancy in our hall, at 4 sqm per person, is as follows:
main hall: 21 people
large (east) foyer: 10 people
kitchen: 3 people
quiet room: 4 people
and if we spread into the smaller rooms and washrooms, the max is 51 people in the building (not including the storage sheds, of course)!
At 2 sqm/p, that would be:
main hall: 42 people
large (east) foyer: 20 people
kitchen: 6 people
quiet room: 8 people
This winter (2020) the advice is clear: stay home if you are sick. This applies equally to adults and children. It applies whether it is a simple cold, flu or the dreaded corona virus.
So, the rules at Spielwelt are:
Stay home if you are sick. Even if it is just a cold.
You can return when you are symptom-free.
The only exception is for a lingering dry unproductive cough IF it has been 14 days since your cold started AND all the other cold/flu symptoms have cleared up.
How long do you need to stay away from playgroup, playschool or scouts though?
We have sought advice from our resident doctor and infectious diseases expert to help us all clarify when children with sniffles or coughs can return to their groups. His advice is paraphrased here:
The short answer is that people can be infectious while they have symptoms. … In most cases, children will be infectious for around 5-7 days (but perhaps up to 2 weeks). Even after people have recovered, some may have a persistent cough for quite a while. This is usually not because they are still in any way infectious, more a reflex to the damage done to the airways that causes them to be extremely susceptible to any kind of irritation. More information about catching and caring for colds can be found here: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/common-cold/
Why do I need to keep my child home when it is just a cold?
Whenever a simple cold spreads to other children and families or staff members, it means those people then have also to take time off unnecessarily to isolate and get tested for coronavirus.
Do I need a note from the doctor?
There is no requirement from Spielwelt to present evidence that you have been tested for corona virus and returned a negative results in order to start attending sessions again. (Obviously, you should stay home and get tested if you suspect you might have the virus, though!)
It’s just asthma!
Children who have an asthmatic cough can attend, and are likely to have their puffer with them. Asthma is not contagious.
Our apologies and thanks
Sorry to make you stay home when you are busting to join us, folks. We know it is hard, especially for our GAP families needing to get back to work – but you are doing your bit to help protect everyone else and we all appreciate that.
Looking for a nice treat? A baking session with your child is always fun.
Here is Gerda’s super easy recipe for chocolate chip banana oatmeal cookies.
They are vegan and gluten-free. The photo above is one Gerda took when she baked these delicious chewy bikkies.
Download the recipe in German (with pictures for children).
If you need to cheat and look at the English version, you can.
While you wait for them to come out of the oven, you could sing along to this traditional German children’s song about baking cakes, which we sing at GAP, called Backe backe Kuchen.
Here’s some handy German vocabulary for any baking session.
Vorbereiten – to prepare
die Schale – bowl
messen – to measure
die Tasse – cup
der Löffel – spoon
der Essöffel (EL) – tablespoon
der Teelöffel (TL) – teaspoon
der Spatel – spatula
der Ofen – oven
backen – bake
entrahmen – to cream
mischen – to mix
rühren – to stir
kneten – to knead
Common baking ingredients
die Butter – no prizes for guessing what this is
das Mehl – flour
der Zucker – sugar
das Ei – egg (Eier – eggs)
die Milch – yes that’s right, milk
das Backpulver – baking powder
putzen – to clean
schmecken – to taste
lecker – yummy, tasty
süβ – sweet
and hopefully you don’t need this word:
gebrannt – burnt!
At GAP, we have a Nudelglas (MonTues class) and a Good Jar (ThursFri class).
At the end of each day, we take time to reflect on some of the positive things that happened during the day. The aim is two-fold: to notice good behaviour and to think of things we are grateful for.
Children and teachers come up with all sorts of things, for example:
- We enjoyed going to the park in the beautiful sunshine, so we are grateful to have such a nice park and great weather.
- Alex was especially helpful at tidy up time and picked up all the blocks that got left behind.
- I saw Leon being a good friend and waiting for a friend to put on their shoes before going outside to play together.
- Christiane gave a big beautiful smile at roll call and it made me feel happy.
- I felt lovely and peaceful when we were all sitting together for morning tea.
- We felt thankful to the teacher who made us delicious warm Kinder-Tee to drink when we came inside from the cold weather.
- Susanne held the door open for her friend, and that was kind.
- Everyone did such lovely dances and were careful not to bump into others, which was respectful.
- We are so grateful to have wonderful friends and families who show us that they love us.
For each positive thing, we put a piece of dry pasta in our Nudelglas or a note in the Good Jar.
Want to try this at home?
Decorate your jar. Prepare a handy bowl or box of dried pasta or paper slips and a pen, ready nearby.
With help of das Nudelglas or Good Jar you can recognise the child’s and each others’ good deeds and things you are grateful for, each evening (e.g. at dinner time or any other time that suits you).
Once the jar is full, reward yourselves with a little party to celebrate, another fun activity or a delicious fruit salad you make together.
The gratitude/good jar is a way to highlight children’s positive behavior and goes beyond rewarding the child for completing age-appropriate chores and instead encourages the child to work at being kind, generous, grateful and helpful.
You can read about the health benefits of practicing gratitude here.
Hallo Papa! It’s time to help your child prepare for Mothers’ Day…. and the GAP teachers are hereby offering their loving support for mums and dads to guide you through with craft and breakfast ideas.
Hopefully all GAP children will have received their second envelope in time, as this contains some of the things that Papa and children will find useful in making the following Mothers Day gifts. (If you aren’t enrolled at GAP or your envelope is late arriving, we hope you can find or substitute craft items from home.)
Make a wool-wrapped heart ornament
Here is Gerda’s video to show you how to make a wool-wrapped heart ornament for Mum. You will need a bit of cardboard from home, and there is 4 meters of multi-coloured wool in your GAP envelope for you.
Make a paper flower garden
Lisa3 has provided the complete instructions and materials in your child’s envelope so you can help your child to create a paper flower garden. For non-GAP families, you will need a variety of coloured paper and here are the instructions for you.
Make a beautiful rainbow heart ornament
Here is Gerda’s video to show you how to make a rainbow heart ornament. You will need cardboard, paper and a few colours of paint for this. If you don’t have paint, coloured markers or pencil crayons could do the trick. Or there might be enough coloured paper left over from your paper flower garden.
You can guess at the sizes of hearts or use our handy heart sizes template.
Breakfast in Bed
Here’s a super simple and really cute breakfast idea so children can make something pretty much all by themselves for Mama on Mothers’ Day (and if that goes well, then they can make it on all the other days afterwards!)
This is toast with peanut butter, banana and raisins. I guess the luxury version has almond butter, banana and choc chips. I have it on good authority that Germans love peanut butter though, so go nuts! Serve warm!
Adding a little paper heart (or a small flower from the garden) at the side of the plate will elevate your creation from “breakfast” to “present”.
The response you are looking for from Mum is “Oooh, lecker!” (Oooh, yummy!)
And here’s what to say in German
You’d think “ich liebe dich” would be just perfect… but that’s only used between, well, lovers. You wouldn’t say it to a child, nor would a child say it to their parent. So what CAN you say? Here are some suggestions that won’t raise any German eyebrows:
“Ich hab dich lieb, Mama” or “Mama, Ich hab’ Dich so lieb”
“Alles Gute zum Muttertag” or “Alles Liebe zum Muttertag”
“Mama, Du bist die Tollste von allen!’
“Mama, Du bist wunderbar!” or “Danke Mama, Du bist die Beste!”
“Fuer die beste Mama auf der ganzen Welt!”
Here are some other fun sayings or poems you could make use of.
Happy Mothers Day to all our Spielwelt mums, from the teachers, leaders, committee and director.