What to bring?

Just your child!

As wonderful and rewarding as life with a small child (or several) can be, is also hard, frustrating and sometimes stressful. The Blue Cottage child care community would like to help you out by going the extra mile and making life just that little bit easier for you. We know! Just when you think you are ready to walk out of the door (and yippee you’re only 5 minutes late this morning), you turn around and one child has just remembered it’s swimming today, one has wet themselves and the other one is suddenly naked! Let us help you

  • Cloth nappies and wipes
  • Formula
  • We provide all food for the children. Healthy, nutritious and varied meals celebrating the diverse cultures that form our community, Includes morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea and late snack
  • Drink Bottles
  • Hats – summer and winter
  • Sunscreen
  • Clean clothes – we provide a tote bag that stays at The Blue Cottage with 2 full changes of clothes in it provided by you. We don’t promise to send your child home squeaky clean but if your child needs changing through the day, we will use the clothes provided in their tote bag and launder the dirty clothes for you!
  • We cater for allergies and other dietary requirements
  • Blue Cottage grow our own vegetables
  • With the support of their teachers, the children will have turns taking responsibility for providing food for their friends such as chopping bananas or making biscuits
  • The Blue Cottage is working towards the Healthy Heart Award

The Blue Cottage child care centre is committed to doing its bit for the environment wherever we can.

  • We are proud that we use cloth nappies which dramatically reduces the landfill waste from a childcare centre
  • The Blue Cottage is plastic bag free. We don’t use bags in our rubbish bins and we don’t send home wet clothes as we wash them at the centre (see above)
  • Rain water is collected from our roof to use in our garden
  • Our taps have timers so there is no wasted water
  • Food scraps are composted and used in our worm farm
  • We recycle wherever possible
  • Grow our own vegetables
  • The children are educated on how to be environmentally aware

Learning stories are your child’s link between home and cottage. They are stories that are written about fun, exciting and interesting activities or moments that your child has experienced. Most child care centres will write a story about each child once a month but at The Blue Cottage we aim to go the extra mile and we write a story for every 5 days they attend. So, if your child is with us for a full week, they will have a story every week. Some of these will be in depth stories linked to our philosophy or Te Whariki and some will be a photo story board.

The stories will be printed and stuck into your child’s journal book which lives at The Blue Cottage but which you are welcome to take home to share. To compliment this, the stories will also be loaded onto “Storypark”, which is a secure online journal that you own as a family. You can share this with whoever you like allowing family or friends across the world to enjoy your child’s journey as well. Not only can you add family stories as well, but we absolutely love it when you do because it strengthens the bond between home and The Blue Cottage preschool centre. This comes at no extra cost and you own your “Storypark” so when you eventually leave The Blue Cottage, you take your online journal with you to continue adding stories.

What an amazing keepsake for you and your child.

Settling In

Settling into a new childcare environment can be tricky for a baby or young child and it can be a whole lot harder for the adult dropping them off! We welcome phone calls from families to check on your children but rest assured, even if you have left a tearful baby, by the time you have got down the street, they will most probably be laughing along with their new buddies.

We recommend having 3 visits before you start but all children are different. Some might settle very quickly and some might be more comfortable with more visits.  We will discuss this more with you at the time.

Babies and children of all ages feel more secure and safe when their routine is predictable. Therefore, it is really important that when you start leaving your child with us, that you have a pattern with your baby or child, especially if they are finding it difficult to settle. For example, you come in, greet the teacher, sit down and read a book together and then say goodbye and hand your child to a teacher say ‘I love you and I’ll be back to pick you up after work’ and leave. Once you say goodbye and leave it is very important that you leave. Coming back for one more cuddle or one more kiss just confuses your child and unsettles them more. This can be a very emotional time for everyone and the whole team is here to support you in this.

Nappy Project

We are very proud to have our nappy project in place. Babies and children who are still in nappies, use cloth nappies provided by The Blue Cottage while they are at our childcare centre. Should you wish to opt out of our nappy project you are welcome to provide your own nappies.

  • Your baby arrives at childcare in a centre nappy provided by us.
  • Cloth nappies need to be changed more often and nappy changing is such a precious moment of one on one time between your baby and the teacher. We endeavour to savour this time and change their nappies with respect and in an unhurried manner.
  • Before your baby is due to be picked up, they will be changed back into a nappy from your home.
  • A nappy will be provided for you to take home, to place on your Baby on their next Cottage day
  • It’s hygienic.
  • The nappies all have liners which allows for easier cleaning and adds another level of hygiene.
  • The nappies are washed at very high temperatures (60*C) in  an antibacterial sanitiser and are dried at a high temperature in the dryer.
  • You will need to provide a nappy for your baby to go home in. We will happily store a supply at the centre for you if you would like.
  • This is not compulsory and you are welcome to opt out and supply your own nappies if you wish.

In the foyer to The Blue Cottage, we have a good old fashioned community board. Here you can post whatever you want as long as it is not offensive.

  • Clothes your child has outgrown
  • Toys no longer played with
  • Services you offer
  • Looking for a great camping spot for littlies
  • Need a great egg free cake recipe
  • Lost cat
  • A great place for getting massages (I can dream!)

At the Blue Cottage, we run a ready for school programme. What might surprise you is that it is not about ABC and 123 although of course that is included. Some of the most important things that your child needs to know before they go to school are:

  • Concentration
  • Being able to follow a series of instructions
  • Communication, i.e. making yourself understood
  • The ability to work independently
  • The ability to work in a group
  • How to be a self-manager

We practice these skills at varying degrees right from the baby room but once your child is over the kindergarten age of 4, we create focused groups which take their learning and discovery to a more in-depth level. The children lead these topics through their own interests and the teachers’ role is to guide and support them through this.

When the time is right, we will invite you to one of our family evenings to tell you more about the ready for school program and help with any concerns you may have about preschool learning. For now, if you have any questions, please ask one of our friendly staff.