Childhood Education Conference-Take 2 ! - The Sector
The Sector > Events > Childhood Education Conference-Take 2 !

Childhood Education Conference-Take 2 !

October 15, 2022 - October 15, 2022

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Shellharbour Civic Centre 76 Cygnet Ave, Shellharbour City Centre NSW 2529, Australia

8 am- Registration and browse stalls

8.30 am – Conference opening by Stella Stead, Chris Homer and Welcome to Country.

9 am- Join Angus Gorrie, our first keynote speaker from The Outsiders Play Advocates.

Key Note: Why Play…

This keynote will introduce the history of the Adventure Playground movement from its inception to their current status. Playwork as a practice, and its development alongside this movement will be discussed as well as the many benefits, educational, developmental and psychological play has for children when offered with affordance. This session is designed to demonstrate philosophically, theoretically and practically why intrinsically motivated play is critical to the development of successful humans.

BIO: As a playworker and play advocate, Angus Gorrie is passionate about providing authentic play opportunities for children, wherever they may be, and pushing back against increased play deprivation and play bias. Angus has qualifications in Behavioural Sciences and Psychology, Playwork and is currently working towards a Masters of Medical Research investigating how play (in the broadest sense) supports the mental health of children. He also spends his day as a practitioner working in a large OSHC Adventure Playground. It is this experience and the stories that come with working in a practical setting, combined with the theory and knowledge of study that shapes and guides Angus’s perspectives and points of view.


10 am- Key note: Educator Wellbeing – Your wellbeing matters. As an educator your wellbeing influences interactions and relationships with children, young people and families. Come and learn more about how the Be You framework can support you to reflect on stressors, stress behaviours and protective factors in your work place and home.

A whole learning community working together can support educators to achieve their best possible mental health and find ways of reducing and responding to stressors for yourself and others. We’ll be sharing Be You wellbeing tools and practical strategies for ongoing reflection focusing on how you can identify practices that support a mentally healthy community. This includes: how you can support your own self care, families and children and how you can create a collaborative approach to building your resilience and wellbeing.

11 am- Morning Tea- Supplied by Shining Stars ELC

After morning tea, break out for 3 x 30-minute sessions on topics that are of interest to you. Pick ONE FOR EACH SESSION.

11:15– 11.45

BREAKOUT SESSION 1 Choose one from:

*Angus Gorrie | The Play Cycle

*Jacinta Ang | Looking at challenging behaviour

* NSW Health  I Immunisation and Infectious diseases from the Public Health Unit



Choose one from:

*Tara Dunbar | A Fostering Embrace: Supporting Children Who Are In Foster Care And Their Families

*Joel Appleyard, Gowrie NSW Erskineville OSHC I  I’ll be talking through how our educator team grew their risk appetite, to now channel children’s needs for risky and fun play.

*3rd speaker TBA


12.20- 12.55pm

Choose one from:

*Darren Brisbane | Empowering Educators – Currently based at Oatley OOSH, Darren holds qualifications in Community Sector Management, Leadership and Management, Workplace Health and Safety, and is an experienced team builder and play advocate.

*John  Frew I This workshop will examine the effects of early childhood, adverse environment on cognitive, emotional and behavioral development and how this will impact on future learning outcomes.

* Sophie Jakimyszyn- Adventure Occupational Therapy I Sensory Health-Sensory and regulation considerations as the building blocks for development and wellbeing.

1 pm- Lunch – separate email will be forwarded to order your lunch.

Browse stalls during break time.

Collaborate with like-minded practitioners.

1.50 pm- Jude Dowsett from Breathe & Laugh with Jude!- Laughing Yoga

Jude has been practicing Laughing Yoga for the last 11yrs, Jude is hired for private and corporate events to run Laughing Yoga sessions as well as sharing it in her Hypnotheray In this 30min session, come on a journey to discover the art of Laughing Yoga, we will cover the origins, Why do we want more laughter in our lives, the scientifically proven health benefits of laughing yoga and how to incorporate it into the centre.

Unlike brief moments of laughter in daily life, laughter yoga enables participants to experience sustained laughter from the diaphragm to reap the health benefits.

A Laughing yoga class has lots of laughter of course and has a structure where clapping, chanting, play and breathing are interwoven through the class.

Of course, we will have a mini laughing yoga session so you can experience all the fun too!

Check out more at


2.30 pm Please welcome Junkyard beats!

In the hands of Junkyard Beats, everyday household items are transformed into musical instruments that create a booty shaking, toe-tapping , electric atmosphere that makes you want to get up and move!

The Sydney and Melbourne based performance group – Junkyard Beats, was created by Oded Prior in 2015. For the past seven years the group have performed all across Australia in major events, theatres, schools and festivals. Junkyard Beats are renowned for their dynamic rhythm shows.

They present a series of high-energy routines that include drumming, body percussion, dance, junk percussion, circus and hilarious skits.

Their family friendly show draws on inspiration from everyday life, the streets and the junkyard. It is filled with imagination, humour and a lot of rhythm.

At Junkyard Beats we transform ordinary household items and recycled materials into musical instruments that are guaranteed to amaze and inspire students about music and sustainability. We have run music-in-education programs, shows and professional workshops in schools and communities across Australia. Our school packages are perfectly designed to get students engaged, to foster their creativity and explore a whole new way of recycling!


3pm: Keynote  Margaret Gleeson: “Bush Preschool”

Margaret Gleeson is the Managing Director of Keiraville Community Preschool, Wollongong, NSW. She has been teaching in primary schools and early education since the 80’s and learning and playing at KCPS since 2000.

Margaret believes her responsibility as an early childhood teacher is to foster in children, educators and families, a love of and commitment to the natural world.

Learning from and with other educators who are equally passionate about nature connections is highly motivating. Margaret has benefited from the fellowship of likeminded people through her membership of the NSW Early Years Nature Connections Network.

Margaret will be presenting on Bush Preschool – Enriching learning, Enacting Children’s Rights,

Keiraville Community Preschool has a strong commitment to nature play within the curriculum. Both inside and beyond the fence children are immersed in the wonders of the natural world and learn to identify hazards and assess risk while building their awareness of their own capabilities.

Since 2017 a “Bush Preschool” program has supported adventures into the escarpment neighbouring the preschool. Aimed to foster connections, appreciation and investment in the natural world, Bush Preschool also builds dispositions and skills for a smooth transition to


Through Bush Preschool a child’s capacity for joy, curiosity and love of learning is fostered hand in hand with their emerging autonomy, citizenship, resilience, and sense of agency.

4 pm- Stella Stead

Leadership in practice – creating a circle of influence!

4.30 pm

Conference finish browse stalls until 5 pm.


Register here

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