I hope you continue to enjoy a wonderful time with the children and are getting ready to come back to school.
Over the break, I have been trying to rethink our schedule options in order to allow for richer and even more meaningful exploration opportunities for the children. After lots of thinking I have decided to change our schedule and start our day in the playground.
Our outdoors' spaces present us with infinite opportunities year round and I would like to make sure we support the children's innate curiosity for their environment and take full advantage of what is naturally offered to us.
Our playground time will include different components, answering to different needs in all developmental domains. Physical activity (free and led) will be the starting point of our time outside, but not the only one. On weather permitting days, we will conduct discussions and engage the children in consciously and meticulously planned discussions and activities focused on our natural environment. We will continue to include several components of what happens outdoors in our indoors' curriculum and will try to take full advantage of the "REAL THING." Science and math, language and creative arts will be incorporated to our outdoors as well as our indoor curriculum. We will intentionally create opportunities to nurture the children's sense of wonder and possibilities, continue to support their natural curiosity and allow them to benefit from additional opportunities found in our natural environment as well as carefully planned activities and set ups outdoors. We want to continue to provide the children with a variety of tools to express their ideas, questions, feelings, connections, theories, and share their excitement and joy!
In order to support our classroom and orchestrate a successful transition for the children, we will need your full cooperation once more; without it this wonderful possibility will not be possible.
The children need to arrive at school dressed with their entire winter gear; this includes snow pants, jackets, snow boots, scarves, snow mittens/gloves, hats and any other additional gear you might find necessary. Since children will be dropped off at the curb with one of the teachers or brought to the playground by parents who decide to park, it will make it quite difficult if they are not fully prepared for outdoor activities.
On days that the temperatures are not conducive to outdoor activities, we will start the day inside. If you are not sure about the starting spot, I ask you to check the following web site at 11 in the morning. If it says that the temperature feel is 0 or above at noon (this is including wind chill), please plan on dropping off or bringing the children with full winter gear. You can always call my cell-phone, although I can't assure you that I will answer right away, since I will be busy setting up the classroom and playground. Eva will not be available to answer these calls either, since she will be busy with the morning classes pick up and taking her break immediately after that. The best way to approach the new schedule is to check the weather site at 11 and see what the forecast is for 12. If the temperature is 0 or above you can assume that we will start outdoors and plan on have the children arrive fully ready. If not, we will start indoors. The web site you should check is www.weather.com and the zip code you should enter is 55455.
I know that the beginning might be a little tricky, but I am sure that it will work best once we get into a routine this will prove easy and beneficial for the children.
Lesson plan is on its way, but I wanted to give you a heads up on the new and exciting schedule....
I recommend that you always have one or two families' phone numbers with you, in case that you have no internet access around 11 in the morning. You are always welcomed to call my cell phone and I'll return my calls as soon as I am available.