At our Class Meeting, we shared with you images and intentions around how a typical day in the Preschool may unfold. For those of you who couldn't make it–we've pulled a few images from the presentation and a brief description of some of the structures that a day may be organized around. In future blog posts, we will go into more depth on some of these structures. This is a brief overview.
Our day starts promptly at 8:30 AM. Parents are expected to bring their children to the classroom directly where they will sign in and help their child wash hands and get settled in for the day. The children will be invited to look at books, work in their journals, work on a puzzle, build with small manipulatives, or visit with friends.
We meet as a group every morning. We come together as a community to sing songs, discuss classroom issues, read good stories or poetry, share our stories and make our plans for the morning.
Morning meeting is a crucial time for forming and strengthening our community and relationships with one another, as well as, it will build in your child a sense of belonging and ownership of what will be happening at school and how s/he will be a pert of it each day.
Explore/Snack/Studio Workshop/Project Work
Children make choices from a variety of possibilities. The classroom environment and the materials that are available that day influence their choices. Some examples of possible choices are building with blocks; writing and sending messages to friends at the Message Table; exploring with light and shadow at the Light Table; exploring at the Sensory Table; Dramatic Play and more.
As a designated time within Explore, Studio Workshop is an intentional time when the children are given certain provocations. A provocation is an experience we plan for the children that is open-ended yet challenging. We consider the arts as a language for children to communicate ideas. The intention is not to create art projects, but to make available a space for children to share their ideas through different media and materials.
Project work is a longer term study that evolves from the interests and questions of the classroom community. Children will rotate in small groups in and out of project work throughout the year as projects unfold.
After Explore, the children are able to come together and reflect on what occurred during Explore or the various workshops. Our goal is to have the children become familiar with the idea of sharing their work and having others share comments and questions as a response to the work. Sharing helps a person become more aware of his or her own thinking and learning and gives them an opportunity to “see” their work in another light. This time will also be used as an opportunity to strengthen our community by sharing compliments with one another.
Outside time is very important for physical development. It’s a chance to develop large muscles through hiking, climbing, running and more. We play outside every day, and on good days, we will go outside twice. We have a budding playground that houses a play structure, running area, basketball hoops, rocks and hills for climbing, a garden and a sandbox. We are also lucky enough to have the Hoyt Arboretum as a next-door neighbor and we take advantage of this as often as we can.
Lunch is at 11:30 each day. Children will eat a healthy lunch brought from home and socialize with their community. The last 10 minutes, we will play soft music and encourage the children to focus on eating the food before them. After lunch the children will be invited to read a book, work in their journals, or be in their own thoughts/daydreams for a short while.
Story Workshop is a time in which we will explore and wonder through the world of stories. This will look different every day, but may include, but is not limited to, the following: reading quality children’s literature; acting out stories; creating new stories and songs; telling our stories using the different languages (i.e. dancing, singing, drama, paint, clay, wire, etc.); and writing stories as a class.
At the end of each day we will come together to reflect on our day together.