8:30-8:50 am -- Entering Woodland Playhouse (Drop Off)
All children enter school in different ways: some enter ready to play, others need time to interact with their parents and/or teachers in order to transition successfully, and some find it difficult and require a quick goodbye from their parents. When children enter the school they are free to socialize, play, or read on their own or with a teacher until circle begins.
9:15 AM -- Morning Circle
During this time, the space sometimes split into smaller groups. Teacher's lead tandem morning circles in either room, following the lead of the group, the seasons, and the curriculum to set the tone and rhythm for the day. Other days, when there are fewer students in attendance, we keep one larger group - perfect for interactive, hands-on games, silly songs, and more. Circle also gives the children an opportunity to share their thoughts and ideas while we welcome the day, acknowledge each other, and discuss what will happen during the day. Children engage in hands on activities, full body movement, student-directed conversations and much, much more! This gives children and teacher's alike an opportunity to fully greet each other and get on the same page.
9:45 -- Snack
At each of our meal times the children participate in playing their chimes and leading us in a bow before we sing and begin to eat. Our snacks are vegetarian, simple and nutritious. If individual children have allergies we will do our best to accommodate their dietary needs. We use cloth napkins, reusable bowls, cups, and silverware whenever possible. The most effective way to teach children not to be wasteful is to show them how to conserve materials. As children finish they ask to be excused. Food waste is composted or collected for the chickens, napkins are placed in a pile, and dishes are placed in the sink.
10:00-11:00am -- Free Play
During free choice children have an opportunity to explore materials, engage in arts and crafts, and experience sensory play, and deep, rich, imaginative play. Children will have a chance to see, touch, taste, smell, hear, and think about the world. We spend a lot of time outdoors because we need lots of fresh air, sunshine and large spaces to run, climb, dig, ride tricycles and explore the outdoors. Games and play are important building blocks of child development. Games harness our innate need to learn.
Children need to relate to the activities they participate in from beginning to end. We expect children and teachers to work together to clean our space before transitioning to another activity. We sing about and acknowledge the work each child puts in to helping the larger group.
11-11:20 AM -- Centers
Allowing children to naturally transition from free play to their choice of centers, their able to narrow their focus on what is in front of them. We provide a variety of opportunities for our children to explore various activities. These centers include art and creative arts, dramatic play, blocks and construction, , language arts, technology and engineering, science and nature, mathematics and manipulative materials, writing, sand and water play, and music and movement.
11:20 -- Half Day Closing Circle & Pickup
It is essential that the children attending our half day program also feel a sense of closure and connection at the end or their time with us each day. While the full day children prepare for lunch, our half day children engage in games, songs, and stories with a teacher before they are picked up.
11:20 AM -- Lunch
Families are expected to provide their children with a hearty, nutritious lunch that does not require being heated or refrigerated. Lunch is a very social time of the day. As teachers, we help the students settle into their lunchtime by opening containers and providing spoons and forks if needed. As the children delve into their food, we make a clear distinction that the children sit with the children, and the teachers sit with the teachers. Lunchtime provides the students a space to have conversations with their peers. It is truly amazing to hear the depths of their conversational speech develop every day.
12-12:30 - Quiet play and centers
After lunch and before story and rest is a wonderful time for the children to spend some calm and cuddly time with teachers and peers looking at books, doing the prep work for afternoon snack, or being creative in the art area. Friends are excited to help set up the cots for rest, leisurely finish their lunch, and set out table top activities like memory matching games, puzzles, or chalk/easel boards.
12:30-12:45 -- Story Ring
Story ring is a magical time of the day. A song is sung, and the teacher tells the children an oral story. We tell many different kinds of stories: some with morals, some just for fun, some to relate to the dynamics we see happening amongst the children, and some that are highly interactive. Oral storytelling is used as a means to encourage listening, reading, and comprehension skills. Children are able to engage and relate to each story in a unique way without pictures to focus their attention on. Each tale is typically told for two weeks to give the children the opportunity to absorb the story and make it their own.
12:45-1:15 -- Rest
Story ring provides a smooth transition into rest time. Teachers sing lullabies, rub backs, and if necessary, children are rocked to sleep. Some children fall asleep and others stay awake while still resting. This is a deeply relaxing and well-deserved break from the busy day filled with activities. Children who need to sleep are free to sleep until they awake or until we are preparing to go home. The children who do not sleep are free to quietly tiptoe back to their play.
1:15-2:30 -- Play & Centers
This is a special time of day. Teacher's are able to spend quality time with the friends that are not sleeping for rest, engaging in projects, organized games, and small group play. This is often when students are able to work together to explore various different kinds of fresh produce and prepare them for afternoon snack if they have not already done so during quiet centers.
2:30-3:00 PM -- Specialties
We offer specialty classes to our students such as Music, Library, Art, Story, and Mindfulness or Yoga practice. Participating in whole group activities is an important part of being a part of a classroom community, but sometimes it can be too much at the end of a long day. Sometimes specialties are done in a whole group, sometimes in several smaller groups, often decided based on the needs of the group that day. The children are excited to participate and bring their existing knowledge to the group while they are learning and exploring new ideas, theories, words, and more!
3:00-3:30 PM --Closing Circle and Afternoon Snack
We formally end our day by gathering together, singing, and playing games.
Woodland Playhouse will provide a nutritious vegetarian afternoon snack that is low in sugar. Parents are welcome to join us for closing circle.
The children are free to play until their parents or caregiver arrives. Then they gather their things and say good-byes. This is a time for parents and teachers to check in about the day and share stories about the children.