Wednesday, August 26, 2015

What We Are All About

 How do we at Island Co-op Preschool see the child? We see him or her as capable, curious, and caring. We see each child as the unique person they are, with their own wealth of experiences, interests and wonders. 
We are a family, and we take the time to learn about each other, and the world around us.

We believe that parents are the best first teachers, and so we do whatever we can to support and strengthen parents, and the parent-child relationship. 

We believe we learn best when we learn together.

We make time for connection.

Your family is our family and you are all welcome.

We care for all parts of the child: the strong ones, and the tender ones.

We start simply, but leave room for all of the growing you need to do.

What do you see? What do you think?

We explore concepts and ideas in as many different ways as we can.

We allow for room to do it over and over if you want to.

We try new things.

We taste new things.

Who are you? Are you like me?

We learn about the world around us.

We follow the path to adventure.

If it hasn't been in the hands...

... it can't be in the head.

Everything is connected...

... all creatures, great and small.

Sometimes it takes a leap of faith to fly, but we're always there when you're ready to land.

It's more fun to do it together.

There's comfort in sharing together,

reaching for the stars,

or having a snuggle.

We learn about compassion,

and caring for the natural world around us.

It doesn't matter what age you are,

life is a celebration, and we want to share it with you!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Orcas and Dolphins at Farm School

The Orcas have been very involved in Farm School. We went twice a month in the fall and learned about the harvest, the chickens, as well as how to put the farm to bed for the winter. We have been coming twice a month since April, and our last two trips to the farm include the Dolphin class, as the Orcas prepare to pass the farm on to next year's Orca class who will continue the work we started this spring.

Every Orca "Teacher" had a Dolphin partner whom they cared for and made sure they knew what to do on the farm.

Each Orca "Teacher" had something to teach, such as this young man sharing some great information about the potatoes we planted two weeks ago that are already sprouting in the field.

We toured the farm and had opportunities to taste edible flowers. This Orca is making sure his partner has some.

We went into the strawberry field and the Orca "Teacher" shared what we know about mother plants, runners, and daughter plants. Then we searched the row for juicy red berries to taste.

They were so good!

We visited the chickens again, and were surprised by their size. There was one different chicken in there who was smaller, had gray feet, and the beginnings of funny feathers sticking up on her head. Now, how did she get in there?

Together we ate snack in the field. It was fun making new friends.

Next we divided into two groups and planted pumpkin seeds, as well as transplanted pumpkin seedlings into the field. First we dug a hole that was just the right size.

Then we mixed in some food for the new plant, and made the bed nice and soft.

Hello, baby pumpkin! We talked to our pumpkin plants, and encouraged them to grow.

Then we tucked them into their field bed, covered their roots, and gave them a drink of water. This little boy lay on his tummy to talk encouragingly to his plant.

In the seed planting group Farm Teacher Val showed us the two kinds of seeds we could choose to plant One is called "Spooky" and will be a good jack-o-lantern pumpkin.

After adding soil to our pots, we poked a hole, dropped in our seed, and then covered it up. These plants will go home with us as a reminder of the good work we are doing at the farm. Next Farm School day will be our last for the spring, but we can hardly wait to come back in the fall and see how everything has grown and changed!

Monday, May 25, 2015

The Orca Class

One of the biggest differences between the Orca class and the younger classes are the social skills developing. Friendships, with all of their joys and tribulations, become extremely important to children in the 4-5 year old age group.

Imaginative play also blossoms, and the play is coordinated with the other children where they negotiate what will be each child's role in the play. We made magic wands to enhance our fantasy play.

As well as exploring the sea shells, some children made patterns and pretty displays of the shells, working together with each other. Lots of discussion in almost everything they do.

For sharing this little girl shared how she had made her own flip flops. The children were fascinated, and want to make their own. We will do this one day, and we will try to arrange a trip to visit the shoe repair shop in town. They kids are very excited about this idea!

Getting the Make It box out is exciting. Look at this telescope on girl made.

There has been a lot of team work collecting caterpillars. Some children want to take them all home, but we encourage them to leave them on the playground. I am sure their parents appreciate this.

And we love messy things, like water beads (if you haven't discovered these, you are missing out) in shaving cream. Lots of giggles and squeals. Love it!