Little Learners Early Education in South Morang, Victoria are well down the path to sustainability and a great example on how sustainable practices can be embedded across service operations. Approximately 40 staff from Little Learners are participating in the Small Green Steps program to add to their already impressive range of sustainability practices.

From an operational perspective, the owners and staff at Little Learners are committed to energy efficiency.  Little Learners already has the following sustainability practices:

  • solar power is produced in excess of what we use making us a net energy provider
  • thermally efficient building design with extra insulation in all walls (including internal walls) and high ceilings
  • energy efficient lights and electrical appliances
  • central electrical master switch to ensure no power waste after hours
  • external lights on a timer to reduce electrical consumption when not required
  • extensive water tanks that collect and re-use rain water to water all the grass, plants and gardens
  • extensive play yards with vegetable gardens, chicken coup, compost and worm farm to support children to become environmentally responsible and show respect for their natural environment
  • duel flush options for all toilets
  • provides and encourages digital filing practices and communicates with families through email, website and in person to reduce printed product
  • provide each room with recycle bins, as well as general waste and nappy bins so to encourage educators, parents to separate wastes.
  • shred and recycle all office and confidential printing which are delivered to a local pet shop
  • In collaboration with Planet Ark set up a printer cartridge bin located in the front foyer to place used cartridges.
  • prepare fresh food on site for health and nutrition reasons which has a side benefit of reduces non-biodegradable waste
  • water use is reduced through:

            running water is not used to wash vegetables or dishes

            washing machine has a full load before washing

            dishwasher is full of dishes before turning it on

            leaking taps are reported and fixed promptly

            grey water from rinsing dishes in the children’s rooms is used to water the garden

Children in the Little Learners kindergarten are encouraged to be active participants in sustainable practices, including conversations on how to reduce waste, water, paper and energy that is used.  An example is the use of unwanted waste items such as coat hangers, bottle tops and ring pulls in art activities to make flowers as shown in the picture below. 

The Small Green Steps program will provide Little Learners with the necessary tools, knowledge and advice to take them to Best Practice status in the area of sustainability."