Out and About Care and Education has opened its latest early learning centre in Mooloolah Valley, and we couldn’t wait to take a sneak peek at the adventures they have in store for the Hinterland’s littlest learners.
Nestled in the heart of the beautiful rural community of Mooloolah Valley, the new Out and About Care and Education Centre opened its doors on May 15, bringing its signature style of quality care and early education to the Sunshine Coast Hinterland.
Despite experiencing significant growth in recent years, this town has retained its rustic charm and community spirit, making it the perfect place for families to call home.
“We know that many families have moved to the area in recent years and were having to travel quite a distance to find childcare, so, we decided to bring our highly respected approach to early childhood education to Mooloolah Valley, to support the families in the area,” says Pam Maclean, operator of Out and About Care and Education.
The philosophy of Out and About revolves around building strong relationships with families and tailoring programs to meet each child’s individual needs.
“We aim to create an environment where children feel safe, secure, and respected,” says Pam.
“We want to help them develop a love for learning that will last a lifetime.”
The education team at Out & About Care and Education
At the core of any quality education service are the educators, and Pam has hand-picked the team at Out and About Mooloolah Valley to ensure the very best for the children in her care.
“I believe in having a perfect blend of age and experience combined with youthful enthusiasm on my team,” explains Pam.
“This means having experienced members to support and guide the younger ones as they learn, while the younger members who are currently studying bring a fresh perspective and knowledge of the latest changes within the industry. We all learn from each other.”
Pam has a diverse background in education that includes more than 40 years of experience in the early childhood world. She has a teaching degree and a master’s degree in education, and decades of practical experience. In addition, she has designed childcare centres and playgrounds across Australia, winning industry-related awards at a national level. In 2006, the centre she created, built and operated was awarded Queensland’s Small Business of the Year—the first childcare centre to win the honour. It was also named in the Prime Minister’s Top Three Small Businesses.
Therefore, Pam knows what goes into building a quality childcare centre.
This experience in early childhood education is reflected in the many details around the new Out and About centre.
Pam believes that central to the success of any childcare centre is an abundance of space.
“Space matters, especially for young children learning social skills and spending time with their peers. Toddlers, in particular, may resort to biting or pushing when frustrated because they have not yet fully developed verbal communication skills.”
“When children have more room to play and explore, they are less likely to resort to aggressive behaviour to communicate their needs. Therefore, having enough space for children to move around can help prevent these incidents and promote positive social development.”
All Out and About centres have rooms larger than the minimum required size, which avoids cramming children into small spaces that can cause anxiety. Along with the generous space, Pam uses soothing tones in all the rooms to create a peaceful aesthetic, highlighting the children’s toys, belongings, artwork, and investigations.
From the soft-coloured uniforms to the neutral tones and calming textures, it is truly a place where you feel welcome and safe.
“It’s about finding the right balance and making it feel inviting and welcome, so children feel excited about being here.”
This is evident in the purposeful way every space in each room is set up.
There is a focus area on one table where children can do counting and match shapes. There are shelves with bright building blocks. There are cosy reading nooks and quiet corners for those that prefer a quiet space. There are gorgeous pops of colour amidst the neutral textures that make you want to sit down and play.
“Just as no two adults are the same, neither are children. we all have our personalities, quirks and needs. So do children. And the early learning environment must allow for that.”
These little touches can be seen throughout the centre. For example, each room is named after a children’s storybook and carries that theme through the room.
“The kindergarten room is called ‘Our Place’, which is about living in different places. The toddler room next door is ‘Wonderful Things’ from The Wonderful Things You Will Become. And then the next room is ‘Bear Hunt’ from Going on a Bear Hunt.”
Outside experiences matter in early learning
One of the standout features of Out and About is their commitment to outdoor play and exploration. And, for this, the new centre’s location couldn’t be better.
“There are plenty of opportunities for children to discover the natural wonders of the surrounding bushland, visit the local pony club, and meet friendly neighbours while on walks,” says Pam.
The outdoor play space within the new Mooloolah Valley Centre also doesn’t disappoint.
“We have repeated our signature African Village here, which has been incredibly popular in our Maroochydore centres,” says Pam.
These timber huts with straw roofs beckon little imaginations to run into and explore.
Catering for children from six weeks old to when they start Prep, parents can rest assured that their children are in good hands, as the Mooloolah Valley Centre mirrors the same high standards and ethos as the two centres in Maroochydore. With a team of dedicated educators and a focus on creating meaningful learning experiences,
Out and About is set to become a valuable addition to the Mooloolah Valley community.
Out and About Care and Education Mooloolah Valley is open for enrolments now for ages six weeks to Kindergarten.
Out and About Care and Education
6 Mooloolah Rd, Mooloolah Valley
07 5356 9323