Parent-Child

 

Scope and Sequence for Sweet Pea Parent Child Class
Parents/Caregivers and children ages birth to 3

Principle
Healthy child development from birth to three is supported by freedom of movement, a positive relationship with attachment figures, and a supportive stimulating social and physical environment.

Daily Rhythm
Alternating periods of activity and rest create a healthy rhythm for young children. An “in-breath” includes resting as well as quieter, more inward activities like story time. An “out breath” refers to more active moments of play time and circle time. There is also a “breathing” or alternating between group led activities and opportunities for individual movement and play. A strong rhythm is a tool to help the child move through the day peacefully.

Seasonal Rhythm
We also experience a sense of rhythm in the changing of the seasons and the various festivals celebrated throughout the year. Very young children are most attuned to daily rhythms and the alternation of day and night, however as they become more aware of seasonal changes and recurring moments during the year, such as birthdays and holidays, such celebrations can bring a sense of continuity and stability throughout their lives. A variety of interactive seasonal songs, stories and games will be presented during each session as well as a short story/puppet show. Copies of the words and lyrics will be provided. Children and adults will have the opportunity to engage in practical tasks as well as simple seasonal crafts throughout the year.

Repetition
The teacher makes an effort to keep all elements of the day the same. Repetition of daily activities and their order over time helps to create a deep sense of security in the young child that will serve him/her throughout life.

Imitation of the Teacher
Young children learn about the world through imitation and “doing”. Infants and toddlers imitate and act out everything they see, hear, and feel in their environment. Gradually, the child begins to focus on imitating those things most familiar and relational. Due to the young child’s remarkable ability for learning thorough imitation, the teacher strives at all times to provide an excellent model for the children. Each element of the teacher’s work is intentional including upright posture, graceful, unhurried movement and gestures, high clear voice. Socially, we model kindness, confidence, and calm. The teacher also carefully prepares the room to intentionally create an atmosphere of joy, warmth, beauty. In parent child classes, the teacher also models for parents some possibilities for creating healthy home rhythms, transitions, care giving opportunities and building community.

 

The Four Lower Senses
Children learn through direct self initiated experience not through verbal instruction. They are informed during this time by the four lower senses of touch, life sense, movement and balance. Our classroom objective is to intentionally provide a program and environment which will enhance the child’s ability to learn through these senses.

Movement
The classroom is designed to give the children room to move freely and practice master of motor skills. Young children require a variety of movement opportunities such as swinging, crawling, climbing, and rocking and rolling. It is the child’s self-initiated movement that creates a strong foundation for learning. Movement is critical for the development of body geography, coordination, and motor planning. As children gain confidence in their motor abilities, more complex and challenging equipment may be introduced.

Touch
Through touch, the child learns about their own boundaries and limits. They begin to discern what is “me” and what is “other.” The materials in the room are designed to give children the purest sensory experiences possible. Touch is nurtured with natural elements such as soft wool, lambskins, play silks, felted or knitted toys, object from nature, and wooden toys and furniture. Sand and water play, gardening and exploring nature are other avenues for nurturing touch. Children also participate in a variety of interactive games and care giving experiences with adults all of which nurture the sense of touch.

Balance
Large crates, stools, planks, boxes, ramps, climbing equipment and rocking boards and toys provide ample opportunities for balance experiences indoors. Walking, swinging, tree climbing, seesaws, and a variety of stumps and logs all serve to stimulate the sense of balance outside. Balance is related to the vestibular system and one’s relationship with gravity. Practicing balance by sitting in different positions, crawling, squatting, pulling up and standing are the means by which a child learns to walk.

Life Sense
The sense of life is an inner sense of wholeness or well-being. Healthy, nourishing food, warmth and love enhance the child’s constitution. Through cooperative care giving experiences, children will develop a healthy sense of personal space and begin to initiate self-care and self-regulation.