During our block party last month we had lots of families with questions about what goes on during our annual inservice closure – so here’s a little look at some of the deeply meaningful work our teachers were doing during that week!
We started the week with time for us to set goals both schoolwide and in each classroom – this process involved deep reflection for the large group and individual teaching teams as we considered how to connect our practices more intentionally with our values. New teaching teams were able to connect with one another and align their visions and values. As a whole group we considered how to take accountability and kindly call each other’s attention back to the goals we’ve set as we move through the school year. Ultimately this training set an important tone for our whole week and informed the ways we approached subsequent workshops and activities.
Purple Room – Building Secure Attachment
The Purple Room team reflected on their hopes for building positive relationships with each child in their classroom as these very young children settle into a brand new care environment. Their goal for the year is that each day, every child will be sensitively observed through the lens of the 5 Pillars.
Blue Room – Empowering Mealtimes
The Blue Room team discussed how the growing independence of their age group is so evident in their meal times, which are valuable opportunities for children to build skills like curiosity, communication, and resilience. They identified a goal of encouraging the children’s confidence in community/family style dining throughout the coming year.
Green Room – Formalizing the Cycle of Inquiry
The Green Room teachers reflected on how they gather information and observations about children’s learning, and hope to organize their work in ways that allow them to create classroom experiences rooted in emerging interests & abilities. They committed to “connecting documentation and observation with formal processes that preserve our thinking about preparation and implementation”.
Orange Room – Recharging Naptime
The Orange Room team worked together to align their visions around naptime and how to communicate during this essential part of the daily routine. They discussed strategies for supporting both children who need sleep during the day and those who need a rest period but do not typically fall asleep – they set the goal of creating and sustaining a safe and protected time for all kids to recharge during the day.
Yellow Room – Embedding Creativity
The Yellow Room team reflected on the essential nature of the creative process for children and the way that this skill is deeply connected to all learning. Together, they identified a goal for infusing creative methods into all aspects of the classroom.
PRLC Preschool – Improving Outdoor Learning Spaces
As a schoolwide team we all agreed on the goal of creating outdoor learning spaces that better reflect our program’s values and which support the types of learning experiences we want for the children each day. We reflected on the ways our needs outdoors will change each season, and committed to doing work each month this year to bring our time outside into alignment with the rest of our time here at school.
During the remainder of inservice week, our community of educators worked together to prepare for new cohorts of children entering each classroom. With their goals in mind each team set to creating classroom environments that would spark interest, invite creativity, and build community among each group of children. We spent time reflecting on meaningful goals for each of us to set as individuals that will improve our teaching practices. In support of our schoolwide goal we considered ways to bridge the gap between indoor and outdoor learning. We wondered: how can we make nature based materials & experiences more accessible inside, and bring more intentional learning outside? We discussed how we approach interactions with the children from each individual conversation through the day to larger group moments like circle time. Together we identified ways to create meaningful moments of community empowerment in groups that are designed around the developmental needs of each age.
As inservice week drew to a close we found our classrooms and communal spaces refreshed and ready for a new school year. We’re excited to share with the community as we see progress in each of these deeply meaningful goals – check back here on the school blog for more updates throughout the year!