Kindy kids learn the spirit of sea­son

Central Leader - - NEWS - By ROSE CAW­LEY

For most young chil­dren Christ­mas is a mag­i­cal time filled with joy, presents and sto­ries of Santa.

But San­dring­ham Kinder­garten is chal­leng­ing its young pupils to have a deeper un­der­stand­ing of the Christ­mas spirit and think of those who have to go with­out.

Head teacher Kate Parr says she asked the chil­dren to go through their toys at home and se­lect one they would like to give to a less for­tu­nate child for Christ­mas.

She says the re­sponse has been over­whelm­ing.

‘‘Christ­mas is re­ally about that act of giv­ing and that can some­times be lost on chil­dren who are used to just wak­ing up to plenty of presents,’’ Parr says.

Go­ing through their own toys helped drive home the mes­sage, she says.

‘‘It meant more than go­ing to a shop and buy­ing some­thing to give to a child.

‘‘They re­ally had to think about what the toy meant to them and how they were pass­ing that joy on to another kid.’’

She says the task has re­sulted in par­ents hav­ing to of­fer up some very diplo­matic an­swers. ‘‘One young boy asked his mum: ‘ Why don’t they get presents, can Santa not find them?’’’

The kinder­garten do­nated the toys to the Women’s Refuge and the Auck­land Refugee Coun­cil after learn­ing that the Auck­land City Mis­sion doesn’t ac­cept used toys for Christ­mas gifts.

Auck­land City Mis­sioner Diane Robert­son says the pol­icy is about mak­ing Christ­mas Day spe­cial for ev­ery­one.

‘‘The mis­sion does ac­cept used toys in De­cem­ber but we just don’t give them out as Christ­mas presents.

‘‘The rea­son for this is that we be­lieve ev­ery child de­serves a new present on Christ­mas Day.

‘‘This is es­pe­cially im­por­tant if it is the only present they re­ceive for Christ­mas.’’

Photo: ROSE CAW­LEY

Christ­mas spirit: The young­sters at San­dring­ham Kinder­garten ex­pe­ri­ence the joy that comes from giv­ing.

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