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Southbrook Early Learning Centre - Things you should know


The preschool is open from 7am - 6pm Mondays to Fridays.
We are closed on Public Holidays.
We offer full day, half day, and school hour sessions (9 – 3pm) at the preschool, according to availability.
We are part of the 20 hours ECE scheme.

What do the children bring to preschool?

  • Children bring their own lunch box, drink bottle and a piece of fruit to share for shared morning and afternoon tea.
  • Disposable nappies if required
  • Bottles of milk or formula as required
  • A backpack with a change or changes of clothes, suitable for your child to experience the full range of (sometimes!) messy experiences that we offer in our programme throughout the day, and warm clothes for our cooler weather – all named please to avoid lost property.
  • Sensible, supportive shoes that your child can run, jump and dance in.
  • We provide sunblock for the children and apply this twice a day
  • Children are required to wear hats while outside in the summer months. We ask that they bring their own named hat to minimise the risk of head lice.

Portfolios & Educa 


Each child has a portfolio which shows their learning and development through photos, learning stories, observations, child’s voice, adult voice and much more. the children really enjoy looking through these books and can recall special moments and memories. It’s a great keepsake for their 21st Birthday.

As well as portfolio books, we create online portfolios using Educa.

Educa is an online portal, that allows you to see, learn and experience more of your child’s day.  Online portfolios allow families to be more involved in a child's learning.  Teachers can send you updates, photos and videos while they work with your child.  It is private and secure, only you can see your child’s online portfolio, although you can share access with other friends and family if you choose.  You can even access it directly from your smartphone.

Family Evenings and involvement

You are an important part of our community and have much to contribute. You are welcome at the centre at any time to share your ideas, discuss your child’s development or just to spend time with your child. A monthly newsletter will keep you informed on the running of the events coming up and learning that children are experiencing at Preschool. We have an Operations Manual that contains our policies and procedures, which we ask you to read, as well as a parent library where books are available on loan. We have parents’ evenings approximately four times a year which may be on an educational topic or just an informal get together. Please read the Parents’ notice board and the programme planning sheet, which will keep you in touch with what your child is currently learning about. We hold formal parent teacher interviews once a year with dedicated time spent with your child’s profile teacher reviewing your child’s time at preschool and any questions you may have.


Excursions are a valuable learning experience and great fun for the children. We schedule trips according to the curriculum and community events and are usually inundated with parent help for the trips, which is great. Recently we have taken the children on excursions to the Antarctic Centre, the Rangiora A&P Show, local school and musical society productions, the local parks and Willowbank. We are fortunate to have public transport at our door, meaning we can jump on a bus and travel to our local library and visit businesses. All excursions are thoroughly planned and attention to health and safety risks is continually assessed with a strong emphasis on high teacher to child ratios. Permission is required from caregivers before the children go on any excursion.