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Birds of wisdom: Cranbrook Care brings baby chickens to school

Cool Bananas Early Learning Centre recently received a knock at the door and a flock on the floor, as Cranbrook Care residents arrived with a bunch of baby chickens to spend time with the Centre’s youngsters.

<p>(Source: Supplied)</p>

(Source: Supplied)

Cool Bananas Early Learning Centre recently received a knock at the door and a flock on the floor, as Cranbrook Care residents arrived with a bunch of baby chickens to spend time with the Centre’s youngsters.

All four Cranbrook Care residential aged care facilities have been home to humidors of chicken eggs over the Easter period, waiting for the day that the shells began to crack and they could carry the young hatchlings in for a wholesome intergenerational bonding experience.

Cranbrook Care’s Bella Vista Garden residents Ken and Janet had the opportunity to offer the children some advice on how to look after the young birds, which will be taken care of by Cool Bananas children and staff for their eggs to be used in cooking.

“The chicks are in good hands here, be gentle and give them lots of love,” said Ken.

The children planted chook-friendly garden beds, along with painting brooder boxes for the hens ahead of the arrival, with their new best friends finding a loving home in the form of the Centre’s recycled cubby house.

When tasked with naming the four feathered additions to Cool Bananas, the kids were quick to act: Daisy, Sunshine, Frango and Big Bird (naturally).

As the chicks grow up over the course of the next six weeks, the four-year old children in the Dolphins classroom at Cool Bananas will have the chance to learn about care and responsibility.

“We have implemented a delegation roster where four children a day will be responsible for the daily tasks of feeding and watering and looking after their new feathered friends,” said Rebecca Murphy from Cool Bananas.

“It’s been a wonderful partnership and the children have delighted in meeting Janet and Ken, and of course their new fluffy friends,” Ms Murphy added.

The creative partnership between Cranbrook Care and Cool Bananas was designed to bring two different generations together and allow residents to connect with their community.

“I’m not sure who was more excited by the chick exchange, our residents or the children,” said Lee Carissa, Cranbrook Care Chief Executive Office.

Cool Bananas’ kids have previously had the chance to bond with their older peers at Cranbrook Care through painting art which was sent to residents for them to imagine an accompanying story which would then be sent back.

Whimsical stories of love and farm animals to tales of food and transport arrived at Cool Bananas and both age groups were encouraged to express their creativity, as Cranbrook Care staff identified budding talent from residents and students alike.

“We have been working with Cool Bananas for a while now, and the reception from our residents and the children has been fantastic to see,” said Lee Carissa.

“We are really proud of this partnership which is successfully connecting young children with our residents through hands-on creative activities which help share stories and build connections between younger and older generations, something which is particularly important for residents who may not have younger family members close by.”

If you’re feeling cooped up and ready to leave the nest, please chick out our guide to social support in your community.

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