Extended Day-Forest Play

New for the 2022-2023 school year we will piloting a new program: 

Extended Day-Forest Play

As a pilot program, our enrollment will be kept low as we explore the possibilities of this opportunity.  This program is offered only to  12 children who are already enrolled in the MWF AM Class.  Extended Day-Forest Play meets Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 11:30-1:00.  This is a full year commitment.  One teacher from the MWF morning class and one teacher from our TTH class will facilitate this program.

Before Designated Start of Program

11:30

15 minutes or so...

30 minutes or so...

60 minutes or so...

20 minutes or so...

1:00

TRANSITION FROM MORNING CLASS to EXTENDED DAY FOREST PLAY Our closing circle with the rest of our morning class friends and teachers will give an opportunity to close the morning experience.  The TTH Class teacher will join the group on the playground at 11:00 to connect with children, the other teachers and to facilitate a smooth transition into the afternoon program.

PLAY and CLEAN UP This is a “closing up" time. Children and their teachers will clean up the playground and then head indoors to use the bathroom and get washed up for lunch.  A few friends may go in early with a teacher to gather lunches or to set up the lunch space if eating indoors.

COMMUNITY LUNCH  Children and teachers will eat cafe style in small groups designed for intimate or lively conversations. As they finish eating, they will clean up their area, wash hands and prepare for Forest Play or Indoor Exploration

 

FOREST PLAY takes place in the Grove, on the Winant Trails, or in the Magical Forest just beyond the Woodland Playground.  We’ll also be open to a walking trip around the UU property and beyond.  The intent is to embrace the wildness of the natural environment, bringing with us scientific tools and nature journals.  We anticipate learning from the children which of these spaces they feel the most connection to.  With this knowledge, we will immerse ourselves in that space, building a relationship with it and all that inhabits it.
On Inclement Weather Days, those that are too hazardous for outdoor exploration, we will offer the following experiences:  Monday Music Exploration, Wednesday Water Exploration, Friday Field Trip.  All of these indoor experiences will be offered in a way to defamiliarize the familiar, provoking curiosity and wonder.

REFLECTION and/or STORY TIME We will gather on the playground or in the Monkey Room for Reflection Time and or a Story to close our day together.
 

DISMISSAL   It is important to arrive early to anticipate time for parking and the walk through the building to the playground and check in with the teacher with the clipboard. Pick up is expected promptly at 1:00 each day. Children must be accompanied by their parent or guardian when leaving the premises.  You (or your designated pick-up person) are responsible for your child's safety and whereabouts once contact has been made.  You are welcome to arrive five minutes early to join us for our Reflection Circle.

Here’s the initial thinking for the Extended Day Rhythm: