CONNECTING the young with the old is what the teachers at Hazel Orme Community Kindergarten wanted when their classes visited the residents at the Italian Village last week.
Kindergarten teacher Megan Boylesaid in recent years she saw in the media visits between kids and aged care residents and the feedback always seemed positive.
“Given, we have access to an aged care setting opposite to us we saw it as an opportunity to good to pass up,” she said.
“The children can be a little shy at first but soon warm up to the residents and happily engage in activities.
“The children enjoy saying hello in Italian and travelling through the corridors of the building.
“Going in the elevator is also a particular exciting part of the visit.”
The kindergarten students performed several Easter-themed songs and painted hollow eggshells with the residents.
“The residents enjoy listening to the children sing and are always smiling and clapping along,” she said.
“Some of them participate in the craft activities collaboratively with a child.
“The language barrier is never an issue between the old and young.”
Ms Boyle said she found the visits beneficial for both the children and residents.
“We plan to continue our visits every term, eight times a year per class,” she said.
“It’s been great to see the children acting responsibly and independently when we visit them.
“It’s touching to see the children and residents, decades apart in age, interacting with each other.
“Smiles and laughter are constant during the visit.”
Italian Village occupational therapist Madeleine Bailly said it was lovely to see the residents so engaged and happy.
“It was even great to see some residents who are usually quite reserved or prefer their own company, get involved and engage in activities,” she said.
“Bringing younger children into residential aged care facilities offers so many benefits.
“We look forward to having the kindy kids come back and visit us throughout the year and we are so grateful for their enthusiasm.”