A Day in the Woods
Our day starts at 9:00 a.m., when children arrive with their parents or caregivers. We have free play in the woods, allowing children to make the transition from home to school in an easy, unstructured way.
At 9:30ish, we have Circle Time. As a group, we sing a song or two, and talk about the rules for the day. Parents are invited to stay until their children feel comfortable, including through Circle Time. Creating rules lets kids have a say in our community and its decision-making process. After Circle Time, children are free to move into free play, but may be invited to create art projects, help prepare snack, work in the garden, plan and perform a play, or listen to stories. Climbing across the Crocodile Pit on a rope bridge gives them confidence and strength, while mounting the clay hill lets them learn to negotiate limited space and conflicting desires.
Around 10:30, we eat a snack made onsite, cooked by our staff. During the winter months, we create a small onsite fire and bake stick-bread and drink warm tea. Summer months find us eating fresh vegetables we grow in our own onsite farm. Children experience the joy of helping by washing dishes, while also sorting flatware and cups for drying.
After some more free play, we gather our backpacks and walk to the Small Woods, a different area of the forest, where loose parts reign. Imaginations run wild as children build forts out of sticks and various building materials around the site. They play hide and seek among the cedars, or watch fawns lose and find their mothers.
When 1:00 p.m. arrives, parents and caregivers come to collect their children, meeting and mingling and hanging around as long as they want. The Forest Playschool day is done, but tomorrow offers another adventure in the glory of the woods.