Preschool

Learning Space

We have two indoor classroom spaces; the daylight basement and the main floor living/dinning room. Our outdoor covered area is home to our parent sign in space, hooks for the children’s back packs and gear, along with the tables and hand washing space where we eat our meals and snacks year round. We also have a fenced space we call “the upper yard” measuring just over 500 square feet that includes a massive sand box and several covered spaces. At times we have used this space as an outdoor classroom for focused activities, and other times for open ended free play. Our fully fenced “lower yard” spans about a half an acre and provides ample space for children to run, dig, climb, build, and slide. We have five garden boxes and several fruiting trees in the lower yard along with our friendly laying hens.  All of this boarders Johnson Creek which we can see and hear while we play.

Families who have been with us for years can tell you that our space is constantly evolving and adapting- being transformed by the children, and for the children, as their needs and interests grow and change. We also modify things as the weather changes throughout the year.

Daily Schedule

Our schedule is meant to provide children with a reliable rhythm during their time with T numbersus. This allows children to know what to expect ahead of time and focus on the learning at hand. We also know that children’s needs and focused learning fluctuate and so you may find that we make modifications.

7:30 Open, before care available

8:30 All children have arrived! Breakfast

8:50 Welcome circle, Classroom work

10:00 Outdoor learning

12:00 Lunch

12:45 Rest

3:30 Snack

3:45 Afternoon play

5:30 Closed

With the exception of planned appointments and true emergencies, we expect all children are at school, ready to learn, and transitioned into the group by 8:30. We also ask that pick-ups happen before or after the lunch/rest period so we can focus all our energy on smooth transitions and a peaceful rest time from 12-3.

Meals

While at school, children are served breakfast, lunch and an afternoon snack. These meals are included with tuition and as per the USDA food program guidelines, each meal includes an age appropriate portion of various food groups.

Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 2.09.38 PMThe food is cooked onsite by the teachers and seasonal, local and organic food is prioritized as well as food grown onsite. We eat “family style” and children assist in setting the table, serving themselves and clearing their place when they’re finished eating. Meals are a social time, when teachers eat with children and everyone in encouraged to enjoy the food and time together.

During meals, children are all asked to join the group at the table and put some of each type of food on their plates. However, children always get to decide which foods they try and how much they eat. At each meal we learn about the the foods being served, including the nutritional benefit of choosing to eat it. We always encourage children to listen to their bodies, especially when it comes to eating and feeling full. Everyone clears their own space afterIMG_3654 meals; composting uneaten food, stacking dirty dishes, cleaning  up spills and washing their hands and faces.

We will work together with families to make a plan for a child that has a dietary restriction due to allergies, medical conditions, moral or religious exemptions.

 

Rest Time

Engaged learning can be exhausting, and a mid-day rest is the way we honor the hard work our bodies and brains do during the day. After lunch, each child is asked to spendelon sleeping

time relaxing quietly on a cozy resting cot. During the beginning of the rest period a teacher may read aloud, sing or play soft music. Then children will be given some time to rest independently, and sleep if they need. Towards the end of the rest period, children who are awake will be invited to do some quiet work on their cot which might including reading books, writing in a journal, drawing, or working on a puzzle. Finally, children who are awake will be asked to clean up their resting materials and children who are asleep will be allowed to keep sleeping for a bit longer if needed.

Toileting

Children enrolled in the preschool program need to be able to either use the toilet or change their own pull up diapers independently with very limited reminders or support from the teachers for both urination and bowel movements.

Children who use the toilet independently are those who are aware of when they need to eliminate and can clearly communicate this to a teacher. As we are often outside, they also need to be able to “hold it” for 5-10 minutes while a teacher gathers a group of children and brings them inside to the bathroom. These children can generally go more than an hour without needing to use the toilet and willingly take the opportunity when needed to use the toilet before going outside or laying down for rest. They will also be able to clean their own bodies with toilet paper or wipes after both urination or bowel movements.

We Screen Shot 2018-03-21 at 1.18.57 PMdo respect the complicated task of mastering the use of the toilet and will never respond with disgust or an attempt to shame or embarrass children who may have an accident. We consider children to be toileting independently if they are having no more than 1 accident per month. 

Children who are diapering independently are those who can remove their own clothes and soiled pull up diaper, clean their own bodies with wipes for both urine and bowel movements, and redress with a clean pull up diaper.

If you’d like to transition your child out of diapers during the school year we recommend doing it over a long break so they are ready to toilet independently upon their return. It’s absolutely fine if your child needs to wear a pull up diaper only during rest but is able to toilet independently during the time they’re awake.

We practice Elimination Communication. Human waste will be discussed as a normal everyday part of life and children will learn about elimination as a biological response to the many functions of our amazing bodies. We will use the actual names of body parts involved with elimination including penis, urethra, vulva, and anus. 

Outside Time

We believe that children of all ages need time to learn and explore outside everyday, rain or shine. All children are expected to have appropriate gear for the weather so they can be comfortable and safe while we’re out. We provide a detailed list of gear suggestions in the family handbook.

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