Daily routines in all programs may include:
We meet as a large group to greet each other, talk about our plans for the day, share experiences, problem solve, perform music/movement activities, play learning games, identify “mystery” packages, and participate in math, science, or pre-reading activities. Meetings help build community among our classes.
Our goals during this part of our day involve listening, speaking, reading and writing. Children work in small groups with a grown-up sharing ideas, listening to others, writing/drawing about feelings, thoughts, themes, projects, or responses to stories which have been read. Children conference with grown-ups about their writing/drawing. Children spend time reading books individually, in small groups, and with adults. Book borrowing is encouraged.
Children work in small groups in learning centers on activities, which focus on practicing growing skills (sorting treasure tins, building blocks, reading a story and acting out with puppets, discovering properties of magnets and the like.) Projects are begun during this time and often take several weeks to complete.
Children share responsibility for our classroom. Children learn cooperation, organization skills, and develop a sense of community while caring for their classroom.
This is another important opportunity for us to be together as a group. Birthdays are celebrated with a birthday wish from each child. Snack and beverage are brought each session by the parent helper after consultation with the teacher. We encourage raw foods and very little sugar/fat. Teachers may request that snack be related to a theme. Families are encouraged to share foods from their ethnic backgrounds.
We gather on the rug again and the teacher reads a book aloud. Children are encouraged to respond to both fiction and non-fiction.
Social interaction with their peers and pursuing special interest areas are the children’s chief activity during this time. Various activities and materials will be set up, and the entire room is at the children’s disposal for free choice time. Sometimes a directed activity occurs for individual children or small groups. Teachers and the parent helper interact with children observing, posing questions, modeling exploration, solving problems and recording discoveries. Dramatic play, painting, working with playdough, woodworking, sand/water tables, and our outdoor playground are very popular choices.
We play on the outdoor equipment, go for walks, slide in the winter, and release our energy. Generally activities are child-directed and sometimes organized games are introduced. The activities available depend upon individual, group, and teacher interests. Indoor gross motor activities are available when weather does not permit outside time. Children participate in gross motor activities, for example: obstacle course, dancing, yoga, parachute play, and creative movement.