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Giving her son Eden the best possible preparation for school was motivation enough for mum Michaela to join AnglicareSA’s HIPPY Program.

HIPPY is a free, two-year, home-based, early learning and parenting program for families with young children which is improving children’s school-readiness through AnglicareSA’s Elizabeth and Christies Beach sites.

Children’s earliest and most powerful learning comes from their family with parents laying the foundations for success at school by teaching their literacy, numeracy, and language skills which supports their love of learning throughout life.

“I thought it would be a really good addition in the lead up to school,” Michaela said. “I got a lot out of it too as it reminds you of all the things that you should be doing all the time.

“Things like rhymes, songs, and doing the actions to things – all the things you are doing anyway but it makes you do just that little bit more – plus you learn other skills that you might not have known about.”

Over the course of his three years working within the HIPPY program, Michaela said she had seen a lot of growth and development within Eden.

“Yes, emotionally of course plus we’ve seen development of his fine motor skills, being able to write his name and things like that.

“He has also shown a lot more confidence, because when we started off Eden was very shy in the group activities and now, he gets involved – it might be slow start sometimes but after he thinks about it he joins in.”

A group photo of AnglicareSA's most recent HIPPY program graduates

Eden was among 36 HIPPY students who graduated at a special ceremony held annually at the Adelaide Zoo marking an end to his involvement in HIPPY.

Michaela said she was thankful for the support of her HIPPY tutor, Kayla.

“They were really amazing; they were so supportive of us and often they were able to direct us to other services and supports available to us through AnglicareSA.”

Through the program, parents are supported to shape their child’s learning opportunities around their strengths and interests and to bring learning off the page and into the world. We call it ‘Everywhere Learning’ – taking HIPPY activities to everyday situations and places.