Age Group: “The Toddlers”
( 2 years or older by August 31 )
In the 2-year old class, our goal is for a positive experience at school. This is a time when children often learn how to separate from their parents for the first time and bond with teachers. Children make friends and start interactive play.
We feel this solid foundation will foster a love of learning throughout the child’s future. In a nurturing, trusting environment, the children learn to use materials, follow directions, and make choices, while learning cooperatively with others. When children feel safe they take risks in their learning.
It is important to work on all areas of development to support the whole child. We foster the social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development of each child at their own level. Our goal is to make all students feel good about themselves, and acquire the self-help skills needed to work independently.
- Toddler Only, 9:00-11:30AM for two, three or five days a week.
- Toddler Plus, 8:45 AM-12:45PM for two, three or five days a week.
- Toddler Full Day, 5-10 hours, 7:00AM-6:00PM for two, three, four or five days a week.
- You choose the days you want to enroll from the days open.
- Group size of 14, ratio 1:7
- Review our Enrollment page to see openings and the Registration for your next steps to secure a spot!
THE TODDLERS ARE 2 YEARS OR OLDER BY AUGUST 31
Colleen Hunsinger (Lead Teacher) Since March 2015
8:30 AM to 4:30 PM (paid planning 2:20 to 2:50 pm)
Janeth De Niz (Lead Assistant) Since April 2014
6:50 am to 2:50 pm
Lexie (Alexandra) Harrison (Afternoon Assistant) Since November 2016
2:50 pm to 5:45 pm
We will be doing projects at the beginning of the year with apples, spiders, pumpkins and trains. Projects continue to grow and change during the year. These projects will be short (a couple of days) or long (a couple of months) or digress into related areas, depending on the children’s interests. The teachers in The Rainbow Gang are very interested in a curriculum approach based on the schools in Reggio Emilia. This approach to curriculum is based on several premises:
- At the heart of children’s learning is play. It is through play that they explore developmental themes and stages leading to physical, cognitive, social and emotional development. Children are active, sensory learners and need to be provided with multiple opportunities for self-chosen exploration, investigation, social interaction, self-help skills and problem solving. The process is more important than the product.
- The environment is the foundation of the curriculum. This means that it is child-centered with attractive and interesting materials provided in an organized and thoughtful fashion. Materials and activities are included to foster all the key experiences and developmental themes of early childhood such as: gross motor, fine motor, music (singing, finger plays, movement), art, science, books, and investigation. Some materials are introduced to the class with guidelines on their use. Most are as undefined and open-ended as possible.
- The teachers’ plans are a thoughtful introduction of materials to stimulate the emergence of the children’s interests. The Reggio Approach is a form of emergent curriculum which means we try to anticipate avenues the children may pursue, planning for this with enrichment materials, visitors, field trips and activity options. Occasionally there may be a teacher directed plan or seasonal activity.
- In all our work with children, the goal is to present a multi-cultural view and utilize anti-bias practices. This is reflected in our environment, materials, and interactions. We are constantly alert for developmentally appropriate opportunities to embrace diversity and divergent thought.
Each child has a cubby and an art file. There is a set of “parent pockets” for parents to give and receive messages from the school and each other. Parent communication is very important to us.
Please keep two complete sets of clothes in your child’s cubby including socks and an extra set of footwear. Label EVERYTHING (even socks) that your child brings to school with their full first name (not just initials). This will give you at least a 50% chance of getting lost things returned!
We work on self-help skills in the Rainbow Room—a lot. To make things easier for your child (and the teachers), please send pull-on pants (no snaps, zippers, ties, coveralls or belts unless your child is able to handle those things unaided). Short sleeved shirts work best for all the hand washing we do. No “onesies” please. It’s impossible for children to do those up themselves. Velcro running shoes and socks are the safest and most comfortable footwear for the bark chip covered play yards and climbing in the woods. Rubber boots work great or outside during the wet winter days.
We will do a lot of messy activities at school and use glue and paint and markers. School clothes will get stained. We wear aprons and do our best to protect clothing but, school clothes get stained. “Previously-loved” clothing is perfect.
After school starts the teacher will schedule a conference with each family to chat about your child(ren), to find out about family members, any health concerns, likes and dislikes, favorite toys and activities and your goals for your child. Teachers complete a developmental check list for each child within 90 days of their start date. Teacher and parents can set up conferences at any time and last about 30 minutes.
We work hard to create a smooth transition for children new to the classroom or school. We ask parents to stop by for short visits a couple of times, with their child, before their child’s first day. During a visit we ask the parent to let their child know they will be right back and step out of the room for about 5 minutes. That gives parents and teachers a good idea about how the separation process will be. When a parent visits with the child it gives the children a safe harbor and one to one guidance through their visit. We find that the more time we invest in the initial transition the less separation anxiety the child has overall.
Our goal is for children to enjoy school, bond with teachers and friends and develop a love of learning.