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more about our day

9.10.14_6 copyL and grub

Our rhythm follows the same basic framework each day while leaving room to breathe and honor the children’s energy and interests.  I am continuously mindful of the fact that many of the best opportunities for deep learning happen spontaneously and organically.   Each morning the children arrive at our cozy, sunlit classroom to find special treasures and thoughtfully displayed project setups awaiting them.  Many times, these displays will be an extension of something the children have shown an interest in or aptitude for – an invitation to take their work a step further. After stowing their personal belongings, they are free to explore, create and delve into whatever interests them.  During this time, you may see children building simple or elaborate structures, engaged in dramatic play, mixing paint colors, creating a storybook, reading a story with a teacher or friend, working with clay, exploring natural materials in our science area, solving a puzzle, writing, and so much more. After about an hour of free play, everyone is invited to our morning gathering.  We read, sing, and prepare for our wilderness adventure of the day.  At this point, we suit up, load up and head out to our destination of choice via school van or by foot.  The possibilities on our adventures are endless.  We hike trails; discuss animal adaptations, habitats, and behaviors; observe animals; listen carefully; investigate beneath rocks, branches of trees and everywhere in between; climb trees and boulders; collect specimens for observation; create leaf rubbings; paint river rocks; collect and sort found treasures; sketch found items; hunt for fossils; observe animal tracks; race leaf boats, toss pebbles in creeks; jot down our questions; build fairy houses and take in the fresh air. Most importantly, though, we prioritize PLAY.