Spanish Australian Preschool (SAPS)
The Spanish Australian Preschool delivers the Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) while providing children the opportunity to cement their knowledge of Spanish and English while travelling through their early years. We offer a holistic approach to education with experiences planned with the children at the centre of our program.
The Spanish Australian Preschool is managed by Bilingual Schools Australia, who are a team of educators that work to deliver the Australian Curriculum and the Early Years Learning Framework to children in different languages.
We aim to immerse children in a safe environment where they feel comfortable using Spanish and English. We are passionate about what we do because we know how important it is for children to grow up with skills for life.
Bilingualism for all.
To provide children with a bilingual education that develops skills for life.
Empathy. Excellence. Community.
We offer a cross-cultural curriculum which is fluid and progressive. It follows the Australian Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) practices and outcomes in English and Spanish.
The curriculum is planned and implemented in a balanced nature, arises from the children’s expressed interests, and considers each child’s stage of development. The children will take an active role in developing the curriculum together with the educators and their families. Our curriculum aims to allow the children to grow and develop their abilities to their maximum potential.
The teacher’s role supports the co-constructed curriculum to enhance learning through planning and interactions with children (intentional teaching) while encouraging, extending, and valuing children’s spontaneous learning.
The Spanish Australian Preschool runs using inquiry and child-initiated projects where activities do not happen happen in isolation. This approach allows for creativity, imagination, skills, and knowledge to develop naturally. The purpose-built environments provide materials and resources empowering young children to investigate, explore, imagine, and create play. In addition, our bilingual program ensures there are opportunities for planned and unplanned/play experiences, which will facilitate the individual child’s growth and provide learning situations in cooperation with their peers.
All programs are based on the teachers’ observations in consultation with families and community members. An individual educational program is developed to respect individual abilities to maximise learning.
Meals and food.
The focus of our menu is health, a balanced diet, and independence. We use meals as an opportunity to teach children how to make good choices.
Age and ratio.
Our preschool offers a program for children aged 3 to 5 years, with a transition to kindergarten once their two years are complete. Although our ratio is dictated by the NQS, we aim to exceed this and ensure children benefit from greater attention from our educators.
Relationship with families
Our program offers support to all families, creating opportunities for parents to further their knowledge and interest in child development. It also promotes and respects all cultures by fostering active communication, consultation and collaboration, building respectful relationships.
Respecting and understanding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their culture is also essential for building partnerships with our community.
Creative and Physical Activities
The preschool children benefit significantly from participating in physical movement classes, such as yoga and dance. Each session invites the children to expand their imagination and creativity using body movements and yoga postures. Our program is very creative and playful. The elements of yoga, rhythmic dance patterns, relaxation, and mindfulness are introduced and presented in a fun and meaningful way to the group.
The program encourages children’s curiosity about the natural environment and respect for living things. Sustainability practices are highlighted through gardening, composting, recycling, and water conservation. Growing our vegetables and learning about fundamental skills of growing organic food, composting and recycling food scraps in the worm farm are some of the skills the children will practise. Nature play is a big part of our curriculum.
Music education at a young age has profound and enduring positive effects on children’s emotional development. Music is a universal language that unites us all and assists us to master new skills. The program weaves art, dance, drama, music, and cultural expression into all aspects of the environment.
From 2023 the centre will offer Flamenco lessons.
The Spanish Australian Preschool is led by a team of expert early childhood and bilingual educators.
Maureen Blewitt ECT
Maureen is an Early Childhood Teaher who was obviously a born talent. Her dedication and love for the children is not only staggering but also very much reciprocated.
Maureen does not speak Spanish, but is very open to other cultures and languages and picks up words here and there, as the children love to teach her what they learn and know.
As a very valued member of our community, Maureen works in the morning and helps welcoming the families into the centre. She is an expert at building relationships with the children and is often seen spending time after finishing her work, just playing with the children.
Having worked as a teacher in Colombia, Natalia arrived in Canberra in 2019.
She has a degree in Spanish Language from the University of Tolima and a diploma in Special Needs Education.
She completed a Certificate III in Early Years Education and has now completed a Diploma (2022).
Natalia is dedicated, kind and generous. Her values are very much aligned with our philosophy and the children hold her in great esteem.
Julieta is an Early Childhood Teacher from Argentina. She is currently switching her qualifications over through ACECQA so that she can work as one of our qualified teachers. In the meantime, and to become familiar with the Australian system, she completed a Cert III in Early Childhood in 2022.
Julieta is gentle, kind and works with the children to ensure that they feel heard, valued and develop a sense of belonging. She enjoys arts and crafts and is very creative.
It is evident that our children enjoy having Juli in our community and feel comfortable around her.
Cecilia Acurio Educator / Kitchen
Cecilia is a Cert III educator, who also is in charge of the meals at the centre.
Cecilia has many years of experience working with children. This is evident in how she connects with the children in a very instinctive way. The children thrive in her company and she is gifted at designing impromptu experiences that tap onto children’s interests while continuing to develop their skills.
Cecilia normally works at the end of the day to help closing the centre.
Luz Garrety Book keeping and payroll
Luz helps with book keeping and payroll.
María Fernández Flamenco teacher and admin
María received her degree in Early Childhood from the University of Sevilla.
Director / Approved Provider
Arrived in Australia in 2013, Cris trained as a teacher in the UK. She has a Bachelor of Arts in Modern Languages (Italian and German) from the University of Leicester and an MA in Translation and Interpreting from the University of Westminster, London. While she tutored GCSE and A Level Spanish, German and Italian, Cris also worked in finance in multinational companies such as Caterpillar and Sony. In addition, she became a teacher at the specialised teacher training school Upton Court Grammar, Berkshire. She is registered with TQI (Secondary teaching) and is currently completing a Cert III in Early Childhood to become an ECT (2023).
Along with education, languages have always been a passion of hers. Cris believes that bilingualism provides incredible benefits to children’s development and equips them with the skills to succeed in a world where globalisation is the norm.
Cris is involved in different capacities in community associations such as the ACT Hispanic Parents Association.
Her vision for the Spanish Australian Preschool is to ensure that children are allowed to thrive in the Early Years while acquiring and / or maintaining knowledge of Spanish language and culture.