Preschoolers learn from home

By Laura Michell

Hume’s youngest pupils are being given the opportunity to learn from home, following the launch of the council’s Preschool at Home program.

The new initiative allows kinder children to receive their early education from the comfort of their own home during the coronavirus crisis.

The program supports parents through a weekly tailored curriculum. Children are allocated a Preschool at Home team, who will provide one-on-one support and work with families to understand how children are progressing and respond to emerging needs.

According to Hume council, more than 1200 families are completing the Preschool at Home program, with many choosing a mix of in-centre and online learning. There are 2100 children currently enrolled in a council-run preschool.

Mayor Carly Moore said the program, which launched two weeks ago, would provide families with a variety of experiences for their children.

“While nothing can replace in-centre preschool, Preschool at Home will ensure children have access to a rich variety of experience to facilitate their learning and provides a platform to still have contact with their teachers,” she said.

“We understand families may also be home schooling other children and we have designed the curriculum to continue the play-based philosophy of [early childhood development].

“This is a big change for our families and staff and the program has been well received.

“Interactive experiences that work on the child’s fine-motor skills, communication and co-operation have been designed to be completed remotely at a time with works in with the family’s needs.”

The council has also set up a private Preschool at Home Facebook group to encourage interaction between families and provide access to activities and information.

In-centre preschool is still available for children to attend.