Why This Matters
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 a 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.
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.
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 through 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, caregiving opportunities and building community.