Budget bonanza MTA shares the best EOFY bargains to boost learning
With the end of financial year (EOFY) on the horizon there’s a number of early childhood education and care (ECEC) providers who are looking into spending their full budget allocation for furniture, resources, and supports to help the children in their care learn and grow.
In this “top ten” highlights collection, MTA and The Sector team have joined forces to share some of their favourite products for consideration by the early childhood education and care (ECEC) sector as the new financial year begins.
Flexible learning spaces
First up, to support flexible spaces and creative learning opportunities, the foam lounger collection, which comes in a variety of colours.
Flexible spaces are typically made when educators and learners work together to create spaces where a variety of room configurations are possible, giving opportunities for children to learn and explore in different ways.
The furniture used in these spaces, such as the Foam Filled Lounger, can provide independent, guided or collaborative work spaces, creating the ideal learning environment for individuals to work independently, in pairs or small groups.
Along with the foam loungers, the Lace Teepee is a great way to make a quiet space for children to cozy up and take a break from a busy learning environment while offering educators the ability to supervise them effectively.
Combining literacy with flexibility, a best seller included in MTA’s EOFY sale is the Natural Spaces Big Book Teacher Station, which is great for group activities and storage. As well as displaying books for whole class groups to read along, the station also has a magnetic white board and spring clips to attach paper for art activities.
Not only can the unit be used as a traditional book storage shelf, it can serve as a room or space divider, supporting flexibility in learning while housing a large volume of books and reading material.
Rounding out the flexible furniture and resources space is this Exploratory Triangle Mirror which offers a reflective environment which becomes a place of creativity, experimentation and discovery. Suitable for children from the newborn stage, the mirror is scratch resistant, and made from MDF, measuring 100 cm wide, 60 cm deep and 90 cm high.
Sensory resources and tools for being out and about
Keeping those spaces smelling sweet is easy with the Aroma Snooze Diffuser, which also comes with additional beneficial features such as LED lighting in various colours, five sound and music tracks, a voice sound recorder, an air purifier and a humidifier.
The red LED lighting, especially, is scientifically proven to support sleep, as it lulls the body into producing melatonin, the body’s natural sleep hormone. The red light also has a unique ‘breathing light’ feature which simulates a calm breathing pattern, which is relaxing and soothing to children. The red light may also be ‘set’ at various brightness intensities.
For those services who prioritize being “out and about” the Quad and Hexa multi-seat strollers are a great way to secure access to the community for children who need the protection and security of being contained while outside of the service.
The collection includes one Quad Stroller and one Hexa Stroller, supporting services to transport multiple young children at once.
The Quad Stroller features removable canopies to allow children to see the world around them, while wind and rain covers with velcro snug fit will keep children warm and dry. A large storage area underneath the stroller means the stroller is primed to transport water bottles, first aid kits and other items which are required when educators venture beyond the service.
The strollers feature five point safety harnesses, to ensure children remain secure, along with hand and foot safety brakes, while reflective strips ensure the strollers are highly visible when on the road.
For outdoor activities within the service itself, either inside or outside, the Natural Spaces Sand & Water Fun Table is tailor made to engage children in experimentation and exploration with water and sand. The kit includes: 1 x Lakeshore – Water Play Kit – 36 pieces and 1 x Natural Spaces – Sand & Water Fun Table .
The table comes with two large clear plastic containers and lids as well as two smaller plastic containers with no lids in the middle. The Lakeshore Water Play Kit adds lots of extra play value to the sand and water table, containing 36 durable plastic pieces including cups, funnels, beakers, spoons, eyedroppers and more, packed in a mesh bag with a guide.
Creativity and literature
In the arts and crafts space, the Masterkids Large Art Island is a high quality, double sided floor standing easel. With a whiteboard surface on one side and a magnetic blackboard on the reverse, the solid and sturdy wooden easel also includes a paper roll dispenser for making sure paper for creativity is always available to children.
Children can also be creative with open ended materials, such as this collection of 134 Magnetic Marble Run pieces, which consists of a series of translucent tiles and tubes, giving children the opportunity to explore concepts such as cause and effect as they design unique pathways for marbles to travel through.
As well as nurturing creativity, this set allows children to experiment with different heights and designs to allow the marbles to flow from top to bottom.
The magnet tiles stack together to allow for easy storage, and the translucent nature of the pieces makes the set a perfect addition to a light table, either with stand alone pieces or as part of a broader design.
Consumables with a conscience
Finally, did you know that MTA can support services with consumables too? Nappies, for example, are one of the highest turnover consumables used in any early childhood education and care (ECEC) space, and have a large environmental impact. With over 800 million disposable nappies heading to landfill each year, considering how nappies are purchased and sourced is an important consideration for sustainably conscious services.
As well as being a sustainable choice, bamboo is a natural fibre, which makes it antibacterial, hypoallergenic, anti fungal and breathable. That means less bacteria, less rashes, and fewer odors.
Nappies made from bamboo allow maximum air circulation and keep the temperature down inside the nappy itself, thereby reducing the risk of bacteria. As such, nappies made from bamboo are the ideal choice for babies and toddlers with sensitive skin.
These bamboo nappies are a great way to ensure that children are dry and comfortable, while also meeting sustainability goals. The nappies are very absorbent and designed to prevent leaks, and after 75 days, they are more than 60 per cent biodegraded.
For support with purchasing any of the products discussed above, or anything else in the MTA range, please contact your local consultant, reach out to MTA by phone on 1800 251 497 or email [email protected]