Volume 31 Issue 3 18 Feb 2022 17 Adar I 5782


Terry Aizen – Director of Kornmehl

Over the past few weeks, we have welcomed many new families and children to the Pre-school. The first few weeks when a child is settling in, is a time of crucial importance to their later happiness in the Pre-school. All children are individuals and while some children will adjust easily to their new environment and new routines, others will take longer to feel comfortable and secure. We have been concentrating on developing secure relationships and a sense of belonging to the groups and the Pre-school. The Early Years Learning Framework takes the view that the lives of children are characterised by belonging, being and becoming. From before birth, children are connected to family, community, culture and place.    

The children are all settling into their new classrooms and becoming more familiar with each group’s routines and rules. They are also getting to know their teachers and friends. This takes time and we need to allow the children space to explore, discover and feel a sense of belonging and trust. We work hard in these first few weeks to establish connections and relationships with families and children in our care. We talk and explain things clearly to the children and there is repetition and familiarity from day to day. This allows children time to process and to feel safe and secure. Children who have a positive start to their new environment are more likely to feel comfortable, relaxed and valued and feel good about themselves as learners.

Separation anxiety is a healthy and protective emotion. It is the child’s way of saying “You are my safe base and I need to develop trust and confidence in alternate carers.” 

Talking through the daily routine with your child each day helps to reduce anxiety. Educators also use this as a tool to familiarise children with what to expect each day, so that it is predictable, and they have time to process what is happening in their day. 

At Kornmehl a great importance is a focus on relationships, collaboration, communication and developing a sense of belonging. Ways in which we begin to get to know the children and to develop positive and trusting relationships is by listening to their stories, experiences and ideas, acknowledging how they might be feeling and supporting them in ways that are caring, nurturing and respectful, such as joining in their play, having fun together as well as sharing moments of just being, showing a genuine interest in what they are doing and celebrating their learning. 

This is done in many ways:

  • By establishing routines that are predictable and constant, children develop a sense of trust and familiarity that makes them feel secure and safe. This influences a child’s emotional, cognitive and social development and helps children understand the expectations in the environment.
  • We are learning who is in our group and how to play safely and fairly, sharing and taking turns.
  • We are learning about our environment, where things belong and where to find materials we are looking for, and how to tidy up together – teamwork!! It is delightful to see the children starting to initiate their own learning, by self-selecting resources to use or choosing learning areas in which to investigate and play.
  • We are becoming independent in looking after our belongings and knowing where our locker and bags are kept.
  • We are learning how to use materials and equipment respectfully, and the importance of leaving areas tidy and looking beautiful for the next person who comes to play.
  • We have been singing and playing name games and learning to find our name cards in the morning and sign in.

Parents are the safe base from which each child can branch out and explore the world, grow and learn and become socially and emotionally confident. Getting off to a good start will help support your child through this very important period in their lives. Remember that going to pre-school is an important life experience filled with opportunities for growth, skill development and fun. Like any new experience there are challenges for both the child and the parents. We look forward to working collaboratively to make each child’s journey at Kornmehl a warm, caring, nurturing and positive learning experience.

Chinese New Year

All three groups have been learning about and celebrating Chinese New Year the past two weeks. We have explored this special celebration through the languages of drawing, painting, craft, stories, symbolic play and cooking.

The children have been listening to stories about Chinese New Year and making connections with other celebrations, such as Rosh Hashanah and the Jewish New Year.

This year is the Year of the Tiger, which represents strength, courage and bravery.

We have been practicing how to write “tiger” and “good luck” in Chinese. The home corner has been set up as a Chinese restaurant. 

The Seashells spent time decorating a large piece of orange fabric and creating stripes for a  “tiger” using strips of cardboard and black pens. Making marks on a page in the form of a pattern is a valuable exercise in pre-literacy.

They watched a short video of a story called “How the Tiger Got His Stripes.” The story described how a tiger asked a man to give him his wisdom. The man told the tiger that his wisdom was at his home. He struck a deal with the tiger, that he would tie him to a tree using a rope. This was to ensure that the tiger did not eat his goats while he was gone. The tiger grew tired of waiting for the man and freed himself from the ropes. Once he had broken free, he discovered that the ropes had left stripes all over his body.

Lexi and her family brought in delicious apples imprinted with Chinese writing to celebrate Chinese New Year. We learnt that in Chinese culture the word for apple, “ping guo”, and is a homophone for the word “ping”, meaning peace or tranquillity, so an apple symbolises a wish for peace. We also learnt that during the Lunar New Year a box of apples is often given as a gift for relatives and friends, to express love and thought and to bring good luck. 

Apples are said to bring peace to whoever eats one, because the Chinese word for “apple” sounds like the word meaning “peaceful.”

The children have loved learning about other cultures and embracing diversity of the children in our Pre-school.

Library visits

This week the children all participated in their first visit to the Primary School Library. Going up to the big school is an adventure. The walk up the hill is always very exciting. The children are learning to walk in pairs, not to run and to stay on the path. Starting to build a sense of connection to the big school is part of laying the foundation for the future when the children will transition to the school. 

The librarian, Mrs Rogart, played some games with the children to familiarise them with the new space and she read them a story.

Alli: I read a book. It was fun.
Amy: I like the library.
Zach: I sat down to read a book and then we played some games. 
Noa: I read a story; I like it there.


The children have begun music lessons with Morah Sarit. They started off with a name song so Morah Sarit could learn everyone’s names. A yellow beanbag was passed around while Sarit sang a rhyme Hickety Pickety Diddley Dum. We sang our names when we got the bean bag. We all danced and did different actions and movements to a beautiful Hebrew song Bashana haba’ah. Sarit played her ukulele and sang some songs to the children. It was lovely having our music lesson outdoors under the trees in the fresh air. We heard the cicadas buzzing and the birds singing with us. We finished off our music lesson with a fun action animal song called See you later alligator.

What a wonderful way to start our day!


The Early Childhood years are the ideal time for children to form healthy lifestyle habits such as physical activity. Playball is a valuable program that teaches, encourages and supports several fundamental movement and physical skills.

These include jumping, running, galloping, hopping, catching, kicking and throwing, not to mention balance and co-ordination, fine motor and small muscle development also. The children have the opportunity to learn how to use different pieces of equipment such as hockey sticks, bat and balls. Other skills such as listening and following directions, being part of a team, sharing, and sportsmanship are also being taught. Life skills such as independence, persistence, goal setting, respect and co-operation are supported and promoted.

A key to any physical activity is enjoyment. When children are having fun, they are more motivated and want to keep doing it. The Playball program is about fun, being active and giving things a go. Skills and learning experiences are taught in a way that is fun and positive and tailored to the individual experiences, needs and abilities of each child.

The children were introduced to their wonderful coaches, Al and Jared. 

The children engaged in various exercises that involved crossing the midline, balancing, bouncing and catching the ball, and obstacle courses. Having Playball in the MPH provides the children with another opportunity to become familiar with the school grounds. 

After returning from Playball, we discussed what the children enjoyed the best: 

Claudia: I liked when we skipped, and when coach Al was a crocodile.
Freddie: I liked when we put our hands out straight with the ball and we bounced it.
Ana: Running around and when coach Al was a Cookie Monster.
Raphael: Running, and using the ball to bounce and catch it.
Adrienne: I liked the running and the basketball.
Luca: I liked being the soldiers and running.
Michael: I liked doing the forwards and backwards.
Sam: When we run forwards on one whistle and then backwards on two whistles.
Tahlia: Everything, I loved it.

After our beautiful discussion, the children drew their own reflections of Playball. 

Happy Birthday

We wish a very happy birthday to Benjamin Halmagyi (4). We also wish a happy birthday to our special educator Laura Meltzer. We hope you both had a lovely day.