ePlay Edition 2 2016
View this email in your browser
Welcome to our April
edition of ePlay News!
Welcome to the second edition of ePlay for 2016. How incredibly fast did the first term fly? It’s hard to believe the school holidays are here! I’d like to extend a very big thank you to all members, families, Playgroup Friends and volunteers for making Term One so vibrant, busy and a great deal of fun.
In this edition you’ll find a copy of the latest research conducted on Playgroup attendance from the Telethon Institute. The research outlines some great outcomes achieved for children through regular Playgroup attendance.
Mother’s Day is also fast approaching, so in this edition you’ll find some great ideas for creating gifts for mum or gran, for Playgroup and at home. Just a quick reminder: focus on the play process, not the final product!
Finally, we’d like to remind all Playgroup members and Coordinators that you are more than welcome to call us at any time and request further information about events, activities, resources – or just for a friendly chat! Part of our role at head office is to visit Playgroups around the State, and all of us here at Playgroup SA thoroughly enjoy getting to meet our extended Playgroup family. We can even put on a Messy Play day with you!
We hope you enjoy your school holiday break (if you're lucky enough to get one) and we look forward to seeing you in Term Two.
Carley Jones
Executive Officer
National report shows major Playgroup benefits
A major new national report has shown that children who attend Playgroup during their early childhood have significantly better child development when they start school, but that many children are missing out on this valuable community service.
The Community Playgroup Quantitative Evaluation Report shows that while a considerable number of children across Australia attend Playgroup prior to starting school (36% nationally), there is a need to increase the reach of playgroups to extend the benefits to more children.
This is the first report of its kind to track Playgroup participation and benefits using Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) data. The AEDC is a nationwide data collection of early childhood development recorded by teachers when children commence full-time school. 
Carley Jones says the AEDC provides critical information to organisations such as Playgroup SA about what is working well and what needs to be improved or developed to support children and their families.
“The AEDC provides us with a snapshot of how children are faring developmentally. The AEDC data can be drilled down to individual regions across the State. This allows us here at Playgroup SA to look at areas geographically that are displaying vulnerabilities and establish Playgroups to assist. We also use the domains of development used in the AEDC to guide our framework and curriculum, for example play activities and the skill sets they target.”
To read the full report click here
Great ideas for Mum
A mum is special every day of the year so it’s extra special to celebrate everything our mothers, mother-in-laws, grandmas, aunties and mother figures do for us this Mother’s Day. Here are a couple of craft ideas children may like to make as gifts.
‘Home is where Mum is’ Collage
Glue 6 pop sticks in the shape of a house and roof onto a piece of A4 paper or card. Assist your child to write ‘Home is where Mum is’ inside the house. You can add further detail like cotton balls for clouds, a patty pan for a sun, flower or heart shapes.

'Mum’s Shopping List'
Glue a small ruled notepad to a piece of A4 card. Assist your child to write ‘Mum’s Shopping List’ on the card. Provide pencils, textas, stickers or shapes for gluing to decorate around the list. You may like to add a magnet strip on the back or punch two holes at the top and thread and tie a piece of string or ribbon.
Mud is in the air!
Playgroup SA welcomed families for two free afternoons of messy, muddy fun last week, as part of the month-long Festival of Mud. 
Playgroup SA's Twilight Play sessions in Ridge Park, Myrtle Bank were a huge hit with kids. Carley Jones says Playgroup SA is a passionate advocate of unstructured play.
“We live in a highly scheduled world, where so many activities for children are focused on academic or physical performance,” says Playgroup SA Executive Officer Carley Jones.
“There’s nothing wrong with wanting our kids to be successful on the sports field or in the classroom, but sometimes kids just need the freedom to play. And there’s no better play for young kids than mud! Mud Play is focused on the process, not the product, and this is what makes it so much fun.”
Mud Play benefits
  • Mud Play encourages creativity in children. It can also be soothing and relaxing, providing an outlet for children to express their feelings through their senses and exploration.
  • It is important that children have uninterrupted time to play with mud imaginatively outdoors and experience nature. This facilitates opportunities for them to problem solve, come up with and explore ideas and exercise their minds!
  • Mud Play is important for children to develop and practice their fine and gross motor skills, increase awareness of their senses, particularly touch, improve hand/ eye coordination and develop their social and emotional skills, including taking turns and leading/following directions.
  • Through Mud Play, children develop a sense of self and belonging of their place in the world around them. Being in and around nature provides children with opportunities to explore nature, ground themselves and learn to care for the environment and the world around them.
  • Mud Play is not focused on making or producing something with instruction and rules. It is about the process, not the product. This is what makes Mud Play so enjoyable for children, they are free from pressures of ‘getting it right’ or risking it not being ‘perfect’, it is learning to play and playing to learn free from restrictions with maximum benefit.
Mud Play ideas
  • Create a Mud Kitchen with pots, pans, trays, mixing bowls, patty pans and any other items your child would enjoy!
  • Make Mud Castles using buckets, spades, leaves, feathers and stones to decorate.
  • Create Mini Mud Bricks using ice trays to create structures, cubby houses, or whatever your child imagines!
  • Tray Play is about using a big tub or container either on the ground or on a table to engage in various forms of play including, water, sand, slime, spaghetti or in this case mud! Ideas for Mud Tray Play might include making a dinosaur swamp with muddy water and toys. Or you can make a construction site with trucks using a mixture of dry and wet mud! Your child might have some ideas for what Mud Play Tray they would like to create with mud.
  • Get your hands into it with Mud Painting! Whether you use concrete, paper, canvas or other surfaces, encourage your children to get painting with mud! If your child is old enough you can encourage them to talk through their drawing or write a story to match their mud painting pictures!
  • Make some Mud Friends! Use some firm mud to mould into people, creatures of whatever your child likes! Use leaves, sticks, pebbles, stones, flowers or bark to decorate your sculpture!
Upcoming workshops
Click to see more Playgroup Workshops
Copyright © 2016 Playgroup SA Inc., All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list