I have been lucky enough to have my daughter enrolled at Lollipops, Birkenhead. I personally work in the field of education, so was very particular about what type of care I wanted for my daughter. After being on the hunt for several months I was extremely reluctant to view any large chain centres. However, was happily surprised when I went to visit Lollipops. The moment I walked in I felt comfortable, welcomed and all my questions were confidently answered by both the centre manager and the teachers.
Diversity in the staffing is something that I value. The staff represents the diversity that we have here in Aotearoa. Languages, cultural values and cultures are valued and celebrated in an authentic way. From teachers and children speaking their Mother tongue daily, right though to cultural celebrations celebrated at the centre. The teachers all bring different strengths but have one thing in common, this being, the way they care for the children. There is a warmth when you see the teachers interacting with the children and this is to be commended. Teachers build wonderful relationships with the children and really get to know the children. Teachers make a huge effort to get to know my whānau and what makes my daughter happy.
Relationships between teachers, children and families are clearly a priority for this centre. The learning journey of our daughter is celebrated in many ways. We get regular updates – face to face at drop offs and pick ups about the small successes she has each day. Then there are the amazing learning stories that we receive via Story Park. This is an marvelous platform for teachers to share the learning our daughter is doing that we can share with our wider whānau. The stories are personalised and heartfelt and make connections with The Te Whāriki, which I enjoy reading and sharing with my daughter. She loves hearing what the teachers say about her learning and enjoys talking through the pictures with me. She is proud to hear how successful she is being there and loves to share this with her grandparents also.
Sunita (centre manager) is worth her weight on gold. My daughter adores her and always looks forward to seeing her in the morning each day. Sunita answers any questions we have promptly and is easy to get ahold of. She has built a wonderful environment which is reassuring and the centre is always clean, and well resourced. The staff seem happy, happy staff = happy kids. I personally believe that a centre is only as good as the teachers in it and I think the teachers at this centre are student focused. I recommend this centre to everyone and feel extremely blessed to have such remarkable
teachers involved in my daughters learning journey and look forward for my son to start there also.
The teachers are excellent and have been very supportive of us as parents, discussing any concerns we may have and more than willing to address areas we have raised as important to us. The use of both story park and written communications help us feel engaged and a part of our children's day and learning. The staff: child ratios are excellent and as mentioned previously there is a real feeling of affinity and connection between the children and the teachers.
Sunita and George. George is the friendly face who greets us and takes an interest in our family. He has dealt with any queries or changes efficiently and has been very accommodating of schedule changes. He runs a clean, well maintained, friendly warm centre which is a home away from home for our children. Sunita likewise is a happy bubbly presence in the centre who seems to get the best out of both her colleagues and the children, if the plays and mothers day events are examples. Sunita is knowledgeable and experienced which shows in the regular changes in the activities and experiences available to the children. Janelle is equally skilled and loving.
Thanks for being our "day parents" and for taking such excellent care of our babies.
My husband and I have been very happy with the standards of care and have never had any concerns about leaving our son (& daughter downstairs) in their capable hands. Both teams go the extra mile and look to actively engage the children on many levels, for example the Xmas fashion shows, gardening, waterplay. Our son has thrived under the care of Sunita's team and through their commitment to learning he has developed more rounded interests ie drawing and writing not just cars and activity. Similarly our daughter is happy under Janelle and her teams care and love, and has honestly never fretted at being left in the loving embrace. There is evidence all around that the centre's child-centric approach is more than a value written on paper.
My granddaughter Olivia has been attending Lollipops Birkenhead for the last three years. During this time, myself and our family have been extremely satisfied with the care and education Olivia has received.
On a weekly basis I have been at this daycare. Additionally, I have attended many functions. At all times I have been very impressed with the educational programmes, particularly evident by Olivia's communication, literacy and numeracy skills. Olivia has benefited from a caring and nurturing environment and particularly enjoys a close ongoing relationship with Sunita. Olivia enjoys and enthusiastically participates in special days and events such as 'Superhero Day', 'Pyjama Day', 'Recycle Fashion Parade' and the Christmas Party. Parents and relatives are always warmly welcomed and personally greeted.
Olivia is clearly thriving at this establishment and we are thankful for the positive experience our precious one is enjoying.