We asked our wonderful long term customers, Angel Tots Early Learning Centre, to share with us how Butler Diaries are used inside their service and they provided some amazing insights into compliance, streamlining practice, and creating tailored and individualised programs for the children in their care.
Angel Tots Early Learning Centre are using the:
- Childcare Centre Diary,
- Educational Leader Diary,
- Our Sustainable Year Wall Calendar, and
- Weekly Programming and Reflection Diary.
"Our Service took over an existing service 5 years ago and implemented these diaries soon after to streamline practice and compliance. These diaries ensure all educators are aware of expectations and ensure everyone at our centre is on the same page for day to day duties."
Using the Childcare Centre Diary
"The Childcare Centre Diary is used to not only record compliance, such as responsible persons, it is used to document children that are absent and the reason they are absent, this allows us to also track illness. The Diary is also used to document staff changes and any relevant messages for the day such as children that were sent home the previous day and can therefore not attend that day due to exclusion policies, daily events and any other messages."
The Childcare Centre Diary has been designed as an admin and office Diary to help manage the records you need every day. It helps you strengthen adequate supervision and planning for staff with daily children and staff records. The Childcare Centre Diary keeps a record of illnesses which can help you know when it is time to send out notices and perhaps book extra cleaning services.
"The reading of the diary is a requirement before each educator starts for the day and is located next to their sign in sheets."
By using the Childcare Centre Diary as an office/admin Diary for all staff, you can ensure every staff member is on the same page and all messages have been passed to all staff. It is a part of Angel Tots Early Learning Centre's practice to have all staff check the Diary every day.
Using the Educational Leader Diary
"The Educational Leader Diary documents all conversations had between the ed leader and other educators, it is also used to plan off the floor educational leader time, schedule meetings, professional development including webinars etc. This Diary is used as evidence of the role of educational leader."
According to 7.2.2 of the National Quality Standards, the Educational leader must be supported to lead the development and implementation of an educational program and assessment and planning cycle. This includes providing time off the floor for the Educational Leader to support Educators. Angel Tots Early Learning Centre uses the Diary to plan for this time off the floor to support educators and plan for professional development. All these records are then keep inside the Educational Leader Diary for easy reference during Assessment and Rating.
Using the Our Sustainable Year Wall Calendar
"Our Sustainability officer uses the Our Sustainable Year Wall Calendar to document what she does in her role. It documents plans, conversations and implementation. The Sustainability Officer then uses her dedicated off the floor time to reflect on practices."
Angel Tots Early Learning Centre has created the role of Sustainability Officer in their service and uses the Our Sustainable Year Wall Calendar to record how they are involving the whole service in planning and reflecting on sustainability. Other services also use the Our Sustainable Year Wall Calendar as a joint service effort. At Brady Bunch, all rooms contribute to the Calendar which is displayed in the foyer in their 'Sustainability in Action' space.
Using the Weekly Programming and Reflection Child Educator Diaries
"The heart of our programming and planning can be found in our Weekly Programming and Reflection Diaries. Although we only have 56 children per day at our service, we have 8 of these Diaries in action. Our center operates in small key educator groups where one educator plans and programs for a small group of children, for example, our 0-2 room has 16 children, however we have 4 groups and 4 programming Diaries in this room which ensures children are programmed for individually and the programming and planning is tailored to them... Our next room uses 3/4 books and our preschool room uses one book."
Angel Tots Early Learning Centre goes above and beyond to create individualised programs for the children in their service. Rather than the 1 Weekly Programming and Reflection Diary per room approach, they have split children into smaller groups and use 1 book for each focus group. This method provides a focused, individualised program for every child. It also enhances the communication between service and families as they are able to see an individualised plan for their child in action.
We asked how the Diaries support compliance for Assessment and Rating
"Each diary that we use is laid out in such a way that ALL compliance and record keeping is there - it simply needs to be filled out - each individual diary ticks all the compliance boxes - all the educators have to do is fill them out - it is really simple and easy to understand - This ensures everything is easy to find and and on show for spot checks etc. Also no need to go back and fill in missing gaps as everything is there."
Common feedback that we hear is that our Diaries keep everything is one place. With the pressure of Assessment and Rating and so much paperwork, it can make staying organised difficult. We reduce compliance confusion and support you in keeping everything together - particularly handy now with reduced time notices before Assessment and Rating now in effect.
"As above the different diaries can be shown to demonstrate requirements - illness tracking, staffing, responsible person, communication, reflection, conversations, linking of observations and programming, reflection, evidence of programming and planning, linking to eylf, links to family and community input."
With everything in one place, we wanted to know if there was still room for individualised record keeping for how unique services approach compliance. Angel Tots Early Learning Centre shared that when used correctly, our Diaries not only tick all the boxes but allow each service to use the Diaries to meet their unique needs.
"Often a diary approach can be seen as a " box" approach, however if used correctly you can really use each diary to suit your services individual needs, whilst ticking all the compliance boxes."
A Message from Butler Diaries
Thank you to everyone at Angel Tots Early Learning Centre, especially Karin, for your ongoing support and your willingness to share Butler Diaries' roles in your service.