9-12 or 9-2.
New families visit with their children in the spring. On visiting day children join our current Threes to play in the classroom or outside so they can become familiar with their new school.
Children often start listening to the Elmwood CD before school starts and they enjoy these familiar connections from the first day they are in school.
In the fall, children return for Orientation Day, when they play with a small group of classmates for a shorter period time so they can meet their teachers and some friends. Later in the week school starts, with all of our daily routines in place.
A Typical Day
Teachers welcome children, help them put their things away, check backpacks for notes and invite the children to play. The room is ready each day with engaging materials out such as play dough, puzzles, or building materials.
We sing our hello song, count the friends, find out who has a job, sing fun finger plays and talk about what we can expect at school that day. Teachers use role play to model how we talk and play with each other. We also frequently play group games from our Elmwood repertoire. Threes go from parallel play to social, cooperative play; group games are a critical way of encouraging children to play with one another and feel part of a group.
Children move freely about the room, choosing their favorite areas in which to play. The block area, easel, kitchen, library, games, puzzles, sand or water, and art materials are always open and available. Many days there is also a teacher-guided small group experience related to our thematic unit. Teachers are down on the children’s level and actively engaged in supporting the children’s play.
Bathroom, Hand Washing, and Snack Time
We invite the children to use the bathroom, and we all wash hands before snack. While we’re waiting the children sing songs, do finger plays, or play games. Teachers join the children in snack and conversations.
We go to SandWorld, Soccer, the Back Playground, Basketball, Elmville. Bikes, and Sky Park. We have free play time as well as opportunities to play cooperative Elmwood games. If the weather keeps us inside we go to the Big Room for obstacle courses, ball activities, building, or to act out stories and nursery rhymes.
We talk about our day, sing our goodbye song. Children either transition to lunch and the afternoon portion of our class or dismiss from the front hallway. Parents drive around the loop to the front of school and teachers escort children to their cars.
Children bring their own lunch. Lunch teachers sit with the group and foster social conversation and encourage eating.
The longer day allows children who stay til 2 to engage in a myriad of fun and enriching activities like playing musical and cooperative games, acting out stories, going deeper into a theme or experience, and getting back out to play on the playgrounds before it’s time to go home.
*Music with Anne
We enjoy Music and Movement with Anne each week, when we sing along to the music of her guitar, play musical games, dance, and act out songs and nursery rhymes.