The Kindergarten is a lively bridge between preschool and first grade. Five-year-olds are awakening to the world around them with exuberance, humor, strong emotions and opinions, and the urge to express themselves by talking, moving, drawing, writing, counting, and playing.
A significant amount of time and attention is devoted to helping children communicate with others. Safety, kindness, and friendship are are cornerstones of our work together. We listen and model language the children can use to express their needs with respect for self and others, and we help children listen to each other.
An important class focus is helping children develop a sense of place through immersion in nature. Kindergartners spend one hour each day, and all day on Fridays, at an outdoor classroom in the woods on our property. In and around our wood stove-heated, canvas-walled tent, they hike, play, explore, and reflect on the natural world in each of its seasons. Spending time in a natural setting leads to richly extended and often imaginative units of study that involve asking and recording questions, finding resources to look up information, using art to make representations of what is being learned, experimenting, and conversing. The reverence and excitement generated builds a sense of stewardship that we hope lasts a lifetime.
Since the best preparation for children’s continued school success is meeting them at their current stage of development, we embed “school learning” in play both indoors and out. Teachers gradually introduce new learning from all the disciplines of school – language and literacy, math, science, social studies, art, music, and movement – in a developmentally appropriate way, carefully observing students for signals that they are each ready to be nudged forward while offering a program that is enriching and motivating.
Would you like more information?
Please email Jen McNally, Director of Admissions, at firstname.lastname@example.org.