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Thursday, 14 November 2013

Rewards of Curiosity

Reposted from Exchange Everyday because here at the SRCC we are all about CURIOUS educators working with CURIOUS children....... November 14, 2013 The human spirit needs places where nature has not been rearranged by the hand of man. -Author Unknown "Truly happy people seem to have an intuitive grasp of the fact that sustained happiness is not just about doing things that you like. It also requires growth and adventuring beyond the boundaries of your comfort zone. Happy people are, simply put, curious." This observation was made by Todd Kashdan and Robert Biswas-Diener in their Psychology Today (August 2013) article, "What Happy People Do Differently." They explain... "Curiosity, it seems, is largely about exploration — often at the price of momentary happiness. Curious people generally accept the notion that while being uncomfortable and vulnerable is not an easy path, it is the most direct route to becoming stronger and wiser. In fact... curious people invest in activities that cause them discomfort as a springboard to higher psychological peaks."

Thursday, 31 October 2013

Technology Caution

We have felt concerned about technology and young children for a long time and we have made it a point not to have computers/ TV's or ipads in our classrooms - its part of honouring childhood for us - we believe children's play is rich in learning and connection and life-skill building and not in any need of technology to enhance it.

What do you think?

Tuesday, 1 October 2013


We have some fabulous art and amazing silent auction items for our upcomming Starry Night Art Auction!

Please join us - its a great night for just $15 for some appetizers, music and great art!  See  and "Like"our Facebook PAGE for more items!  

Call 604-214-3490 for tickets

Saturday, 31 August 2013

Open for Business

West Cambie Children's Centre will open it's doors and welcome 42 children on Tuesday September 3, 2013.

It is a huge moment for the Society.......long awaited.

The staff teams and the playground installers worked hard all week to be ready .... and we are......I will post some better shots soon but here is a little peek.

Friday, 9 August 2013

Encouraging Early Writing

REPOST from Exchange Everyday

August 7, 2013
A smile is the universal welcome.
-Max Eastman
In her article, "Encouraging Preschoolers' Early Writing Efforts: Take Another Look at That Scribble," which serves as the basis for theExchange Out-of-the-Box Training Kit:Encouraging Early Writing, Leslie Falconer provides these insights:

"If there’s one object common to pre-schools and child care centers the world over, it’s pieces of paper covered with looping scribbles made by small hands learning to hold a pencil or crayon.  The next time you’re cleaning up at the end of a busy day, though, consider taking a closer look at those scribbles.  They’re actually samples of early writing, and an invitation for you to channel those small hands into recording their new ideas and creative thoughts....

"Writing is an extraordinarily complex process for young children.  It requires children to formulate personal opinions or ideas and then translate them into written symbols that represent words they use in oral language.  Because this process is very demanding on both an emotional and intellectual level, it is important for educators to celebrate the child each time she experiments with writing.  Cultivating a child’s willingness to express herself through scribbles or inventive spelling will yield benefits in her long-term social, emotional, and intellectual development."

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

West Cambie Children's Centre - Welcome to the family

We moved in to our new centre  - West Cambie Children's Centre last week and it was a very sweet moment after years of waiting and planning......

We open with the children on September 3rd and we are full.

We plan to open a preschool upstairs in 2014 so let us know if you are interested in that.

Tuesday, 23 July 2013


We have September 1, 2013 openings at:

Cook Road Children's Centre for 3-5 year olds

and at our new

West Cambie Children's Centre for 4 year olds 

Please call 

Cook Road : 604-214-8271

West Cambie : 604-231-0870 or 604-214-3490

These centres are just 5 minutes from one another in central Richmond.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013


We are so grateful for this meaningful letter to the Editor from a parent......

Child care, a community effort


The Editor,
As a first-time parent in 2003, I worried about returning to work in the midst of a childcare shortage, particularly for infants and toddlers.
Ten years later, and after enrolling three children at Bowling Green Children's Centre, our time has come to say goodbye.
My husband and I learned so much from the talented early childhood educators at Bowling Green. They taught us strategies to deal with challenging behaviour and opened our eyes to the amazing things our children were capable of. They helped prepare us and our children for kindergarten.
And, at the end of every day, they made us feel as if our children were special.
The Society of Richmond Children's Centres is a non-profit organization currently running Bowling Green, Cook Road and Terra Nova Children's Centres. Under the guidance of their dedicated executive director, Nicky Byres, and board of directors, the society provides an outstanding service for our community.
Luckily for Richmond families and businesses, the society is growing and will soon open the West Cambie Children's Centre.
Sadly, 10 years after having my first child, the overall shortage of quality childcare, particularly for infants and toddlers, still exists.
As parents, we don't work to buy fancy cars, Jimmy Choo shoes or go on elaborate vacations. We work to pay our mortgages, afford orthodontics and give our children music lessons. We may work, but we also devote ourselves to our children.
Childcare is not about delegating the raising of our children to someone else. It is about a community of care - one that allows families to be financially stable, keeps skilled and educated workers in the workforce and nurtures our future leaders.
To Byres and the Bowling Green teachers - our heartfelt thanks for all you do. The Pan family will miss you immensely.
Teresa Pan Richmond

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Home away from home

From the Bowling Green Toddler Room:

You may have noticed that we’ve been going through a few changes in our room lately.  We’ve moved a couple of things around, bought new furniture, used different materials in different ways but all with a purpose in mind.

After our visit to Hilltop we’ve sat down as a team and have had many discussions about our program and we’ve been inspired to change our environment and have it reflect and honour the children, the families, and educators of our program.

As a whole, we love the idea of providing a “home away from home” for the children and families, as well as the educators.

While picking up Matthew, Maja and Melanie engaged in a conversation that led Melanie to express to Maja how we’ve wanted to plant more trees and flowers in our yard.  To Melanie’s surprise, Maja mentioned that they were landscaping their home and had many flowers and plants they were getting rid of and offered to bring them in for us.  Melanie was ecstatic and told us the exciting news later that afternoon.  The following day, Melanie went over to Matthew’s house to help dig up the plants and flowers that Matthew and his family were giving to us.

When Melanie arrived at the center with the plants and the flowers, the children were immediately curious and wanted to take part in what was happening.  They asked many questions about what these things were that Melanie was bringing in and what we were going to do with them.  Melanie went on to explain that these plants and flowers were from Matthew and his family and that she had gone to his home to help bring them to the center.  When she asked the children if they wanted to help plant the different items the children answered with an excited “Yes!” including Matthew.

We are so grateful to Matthew and his family for sharing something from their home with us.  Bringing something from home is always special to the children.  Whatever it is they bring, they always want to show everyone and talk to everyone about it.  This special item they bring, whatever it may be, is a connection to their home life in which most cases provides a sense of comfort for the children along with belonging while being away from home.

This led us all to think it would be great if every child and their family picked an item they would like to donate to the program (for example a basket, blanket, pillow, lamp, etc.) that’s meaningful both to the child and their family and have it be a part of our classroom?

We would love to have all of these different and personal items to create a place that feels like home to each child and family.  I believe it will encourage the children to continue to thrive and feel a sense of well-being and belonging when they come in.

Having a place that they can truly call their own by sharing a piece of their home with us, is the beginning of a family oriented place we would love to have and share together in our room.

We’re really excited and looking forward to having our families be a part of this meaningful experience in the near future.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Making Friends with Leaves

I spent a delightful morning At Terra Nova Children's Centre. 

Officially I was there to observe an ECE Practicum student but I got so involved with the children and their play and art.  I ended up having a great time in conversation with our artists and scientists.

Thanks to my student for presenting a great activity and to the children for their boundless curiosity and creativity.
Beautiful presentation of leaves for exploration
Matching green leaves to green paint chips takes careful observation

An unexpected moment of wonder when light refracted through the magnifying glass

Taking the work seriously and with deep concentration

One child chose to sort all the leaves on the art table

Beautiful art presentation

A carefully constructed art installation

This child made her own leaf....she cut it out herself

She really wanted me to see the lines of the leaf

Art and science collided for a wonderful, peaceful morning of discovery.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

West Cambie Waitlist

We have contacted everyone on our current waitlists and offered them priority on the West Cambie Waitlist for a projected September 1, 2013 opening.

The general public may start waitlisting now on our website and by clicking on the West Cambie button.

More information regarding an Open House will be posted here once we have a confirmed opening date.

Please contact if you have any questions.

One step closer to new child care spaces for Richmond!

Friday, 12 April 2013

West Cambie Children's Centre Ribbon Cutting

You may have read THIS article in the Richmond News today.

We need to correct the information that while the child care centre is substantially completed it is NOT finished, is NOT opening now and we do NOT yet have an opening date.

At the moment the Developer is completing the interior, the City is reviewing the requirements for occupancy, cubbies and playgrounds need to be installed, and a license has to be granted to operate.

These activities will take another couple of months at least.

We are still hopeful it will be open this Summer (2013) but it looks to be closer to September at this point.
April 11, 2013
As soon as a date is confirmed we will open the waitlist.  Until then we suggest you get on the SRCC waitlist as those on it will be given priority for the new spaces at West Cambie (12 infant/12 toddler/25 3-5's and preschool to start - Out-of-school care may start later).

Please call Nicky 604-214-3490 if you have any questions on the development.

For waitlist please call Jennifer at 604-231-0870

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Block Play

Unit Blocks Turn 100!
Arriving at one goal is the starting point to another.
-John Dewey
Community Playthings has observed that 2013 marks the unit block’s 100th birthday:

"In 1913, Caroline Pratt was a young teacher working in Manhattan. Having grown up on a farm, she understood about hands-on learning. But she realized that city children were deprived of much of the practical know-how that seemed natural to country kids. This concern, coupled with inspiration from the Froebel course she’d just completed, led Pratt to design the Unit Block. Its mathematical proportions and open-ended nature blend perfectly with Froebel’s philosophy.

"Because there is no 'correct' use of blocks, children have no fear of failure. Imagination guides their play, and each experiment encourages the next. While observing block play, adults can almost hear a child’s thoughts! Block play allows children to re present ideas in concrete ways — preparing their minds for more abstract forms of symbolism, such as written language. Block play supports knowledge and understanding of the world as children create miniature environments and experiment with concepts like design, symmetry, and balance. Architect Frank Lloyd Wright attributed his success to an early love of block play."

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

What is Play?

February 26, 2013

The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.
-Eleanor Roosevelt
"Historically, play has been viewed as a frivolous break from important endeavors like working and learning when, in fact, a child’s ability to fully and freely engage in play is essential to their learning, productivity, and overall development," observe Steve Gross and Rebecca Cornelli Sanderson in their article, "Play is the Way," in the Beginnings section of the September/October 2012 Exchange magazine. They continue:

"A natural drive to play is universal across all young mammals. Children from every society on earth spend time playing. Why? Because play is a crucial vehicle for exploring and learning, developing new skills, and connecting with others. From an infant’s first smile to a preschooler’s careful construction of a tower, children use play to engage with and learn about their world. Play has key neurological, cognitive, socio-emotional, and physiological benefits for children’s health. Most importantly, play is the way in which children form loving, trusting relationships.

"People often think of play in terms of specific ‘play activities’ such as tag, soccer, or playing in the sandbox. In contrast, they think of work in terms of activities like raking leaves, cooking, cleaning, or doing homework. It is our belief that any activity, as long as it is done with a playful approach, is play. In other words, it’s not about what you do, it’s about how you do it.  Playfulness is the expression of our natural drive to freely and joyfully explore, engage, and connect with the surrounding world."

Saturday, 19 January 2013

Ig's done!

What took .......

400 4l milk cartons
30 enthusiastic children
5 dedicated teachers
30 milk chugging families
2 months


Introducing the Igloo


Monday, 14 January 2013

Igloo If you Please

The 3-5's at Bowling Green decided to build an igloo. 

For over a month they have been collecting 4L milk jugs.

Everyday little people arrive with as many milk jugs as they could find.

Parents report milk consumption is at an all time high in their homes :)

We washed them and hung them all around the centre as they came in

And today the day finally arrived that building could begin.......