At least once a week, two parent-teachers take 6 to 8 children into Glen Canyon on a hike and nature exploration. The canyon offers numerous opportunities for imaginative play (sticks, forts), sensory play, building gross motor skills (climbing trees, climbing rocks, navigating paths), and honing listening and observation skills. Nature activities incorporate the season and weather.
Teacher Andrew brings his guitar and instruments each Friday and leads the class in a number of musical activities, including raucous sing-a-longs, easy call-and-response patterns, and tonal games. The program is rooted in the knowledge that children are inherently musical, they learn by watching and imitating, and there are few things as satisfying as making music with friends and family, regardless of one's skill level.
Our school has a great relationship with the Janet Pomeroy Recreation and Rehabilitation Center, which has an indoor swimming pool heated from 90-93 degrees. Each Thursday we have the shallow part of the pool reserved for our school from 10-11 a.m. year-round. During the school year, three parent-teachers escort six children to the pool each week. The swim program does not provide swimming lessons and the children do not need to know how to swim. This is an opportunity to play and become comfortable in the water.
Our school organizes many opportunities for students to explore San Francisco and the Bay area. Every year we go to the symphony, take a train trip on the Caltrain to Burlingame for a picnic, and go camping at the beginning and end of the school year. Other events have included a private story time at Charlie’s Corner in Noe Valley, visits to our local fire station, and theater/dance performances at the Yerba Buena Center.
Our school has a garden plot in the Little Red Hen Community Garden, which is just a short stroll from school. Children plant seeds, water, and harvest vegetables, fruits, and herbs year-round. They use all their senses while learning about the seasons, the weather, the cycles of life, and the insects and critters that share the garden.