In each preschool classroom, the overlapping age ranges allow for flexibility to place children in the appropriate classroom based on their unique development, which is not necessarily based on age. Teacher and parent can work together to make sure their child is in the best classroom for his or her emotional and intellectual development.
We need not look at the very young children as small, helpless human beings. Rather, we honor and value their immense mental capacity and many physical abilities that cannot be witnessed unless environments assist in the expression of and respect for their lives. The most important elements for a child within a prepared environment are safety, beauty, concentration, and compassion from adults. We give children a calm, consistent environment where they can flourish and explore.
- We give children the words to use to resolve conflicts and then consistently ask them to “use their words”. A teacher role is to model patience, words and tones of voice.
- Respect for concentration is a hallmark of this classroom as we believe it lays the foundation for a child’s character and learning skills. Overdone praise, unasked-for help or even a look can be enough to interrupt a child’s concentration or the meaningful activity at hand.
- Our materials and their place in the classroom contribute to the overall serenity of our environments and subtly instill an appreciation of beauty, color, weight and texture.
- The adult role in the classroom is to prepare the environment and present lessons to support the ever expansive mind and person of the child. We speak softly, model careful words, take a slower pace and give simple directions. We constantly refine approaches to meet the needs of the individual child. We respect all efforts and achievements.