Blog - 21 July 2021
Colleen’s career as an educator spans over 32 years and we are both proud and fortunate to have her as part of the Camp Australia team. Colleen leads a team of educators at Yarrawarrah Public School, dedicated to the 100 children attending before and after school care each week and was once awarded with an Australia Day Award for her work in OSHC.
Initially commencing in the field as a qualified school teacher, took the opportunity to be an Outside School Hours Care Coordinator, and worked with the same service for 18 years, moving to Yarrawarrah Public School over 10 years ago.
On a personal level, Colleen enjoys spending her spare time with her niece and two nephews, along with her Beagle dog.
We wanted to know what Colleen liked most about her role with Camp Australia. Her response clearly demonstrates her passion for what she does: “The most wonderful thing about working in OSHC is watching children grow, learn and have fun. I love working in OSHC. You learn something new every day and continually grow professionally and emotionally.”
Children from kindergarten to Year 6 amaze Colleen each and every day! She makes children feel special and enjoys getting to know all of the children in before and after school care. It’s rewarding teaching children to learn new things.
Being an educator is a truly rewarding experience and when the children pop back into the service to visit after their primary school journey, it really does mean a lot to educators.
Colleen will always remember being invited to a wedding of one of the children who use to attend her service. Seeing him as an adult and moving to a new chapter in life was a great privilege for Colleen.
It makes your heart melt when a child visits the service years later to tell you that she became a teacher because of you…this happened to Colleen, and we’re not surprised as Colleen is a tremendous role model.
Art and craft is such an important component of being a child and Colleen always feels special when children proudly present her with their creations - “A special part of being an educator is the beautiful art and craft works that the children proudly give to me which they have created with such care and thoughtfulness.”
Colleen’s Advice for Primary School Children
• Keep On Smiling! A smile costs nothing but can brighten someone’s day.
• Respect yourself and others, always consider how others are feeling and believe in yourself.
• A winner is someone who has the courage to keep trying, never gives up, learns from mistakes and is gracious.
• Treasure all the precious moments and all the wonderful things about being a child – play, be kind, try new things, smile and know that someone always cares about you.
• Be grateful for all the big and little things.
• Do something kind, help someone and smile at somebody every day.
• Say no to bullying!
We asked Colleen how she guides children’s growth: “I guide children’s growth through respecting every child, being dedicated, caring and genuinely wanting to guide their learning and development. I always treat each child like I would want my child to be treated by others. I put in a lot of time to ensure every child’s experience at our OSHC service is valuable, fun and memorable. I hope every child treasures their time at OSHC and that maybe I have played an important part in guiding their growth.”
Last term, Colleen remembered when a child hand-picked a flower for her. She treasures these moments as an educator. Colleen states, “I think every child is special and you can learn something new about each child every day. I feel that caring for children is one of the most important and rewarding things you can do in life as you are positively guiding them into their future. I hope every child treasures and happily remembers their time at our service.”
To learn more about Camp Australia, visit https://www.campaustralia.com.au/.