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Pamela Dredge

Centre Manager - Early Learning Services The Ridge

 “A child is like a butterfly in the wind. Some can fly higher than others, but each on flies the best it can. Why compare one against the other? Each one is different, each one is special, each one is beautiful” 

While I was in high school I wanted to either be a chef or a teacher as I love being creative. I was offered an apprenticeship as a chef and completed it, I was then in the right place at the right time and saw a job advert for a childcare cook I thought I could combine both and am so happy I did. I worked my way up from a cook to an assistand to a room leader then finally to a CM. It is the most rewarding job I have ever had and every day is an adventure.

The one think I have learnt over my 10 years in the industry is that no two children are the same. You need to treat every child as an individual as something that works for one child may not work for another that is what makes them who they are. I love the journey you have when meeting a new child for the first time you get to discover they little traits, likes/dislikes and have an insight to their developing personality as you get to know them a little more while building a relationship with them.

I treat every child the same as I would my own child, I challenge them, I support them, I protect them and I show them love and warmth. By doing this I hope it shows children that no matter who you are, every person matters and should be included.

During our tours we show potential families what the children are currently learning about based on children’s current interests. Educators are trained in child development in order to challenge each child to reach their full potential. Currently our children are learning about space, planets and the galaxy. In the past they have earnt about transport, the human body, bugs and insects, multiculturalism and dinosaurs just to name a few.

Our Team Child Protection Statement at The Ridge advocates for all children in our care, we believe communication is key and we take all reasonable steps to protect children from abuse and neglect.

We have long-serving, multicultural team members who reflect our local community. Many have been with the centre over years. It’s the sort of centre where everyone knows all the children, no matter which room they are in. We are such a close-knit team it feels like one big family.

The best part of my job is the team – they are so committed and positive about their role as educators.  The whole team sees their role as incredibly important, helping children establish the building blocks for a successful lifetime of learning.

When starting your child in childcare no matter how old they are it can be a little daunting; however I try and work with the family through the whole process, through helping answer any questions about filling out the enrolment form, suggestion what to pack, to offering orientation days. I try to be as supportive as I can, it can be a very emotional journey which I have personally gone through myself when putting my own child into care. I am always available for families to answer questions or help wherever they need.

I have an open door policy any parent can come to me or any educator and speak openly about their child or anything they may not understand or they can email or phone the centre. We offer parents/ Children snacks during the morning/afternoon drop off to save them timewe regularly hold celebrations to bring our families together as a local community.

We offer orientations prior to children starting so that we can start to build the foundations of our relationships with our families, during this time families come to the centre and we discuss their child’s care, what they like etc. We believe if we have a relationship with our families this helps settles new children as it shows trust, if my parents are relaxed then I can be relaxed.

I’m not really a girly girl more like a Tom Boy I like fast cars, getting dirty etc. I absolutely love trains, you can normally find me doing something train related with my husband and son. We actually own a miniature train we take to miniature railways around New South Wales. However my favourite train would have to be a steam train, my family and I have adventures in the car chasing them to see if we can beat them to a certain station, I love the smell of the ash, and hearing the noise they make and best of all getting coal dust everywhere.

Call to enquire 1800 413 885