Teacher- Ally Spors
Schedule Options: 1- 5 days/week.
Before School Care: 7 a.m. - 8:15 a.m.
Morning Schedule: 8:15 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
Afternoon Schedule: 11:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Extended Care: 3:30 p.m. - 6 p.m.
The new Hatchlings Class serves students from the time in which they become mobile walkers through age 2. The class offers families flexibility with their child's school schedule by allowing them to choose any number of days from 1 -5 per week. During the school day, God's littlest learners will spend time exploring the world around them through developmental activities that promote motor skill coordination, language acquisition, social and emotional awareness, sensory stimulation, routine and predictive procedural development, and pre-academic skills, all while growing their faith and teaching them about the love of Jesus! We follow the "Love and Logic" classroom management framework in order to guide the children in learning how to care for one another, make safe choices, and model Jesus's love. The children have daily opportunities to explore their learning environment both indoors and outside as well as spending time in the dramatic play room and motor room.
The Hatchlings enjoy learning through play, so we strive to establish creative ways for the students to experience a variety of role-playing activities and celebrations. Some of the student and family favorites include color days in which the children are encouraged to wear the featured color of the month while participating in a full-day of "colorful" experiences. We also enjoy celebrating literature by hosting Dr. Seuss Week, Fairy Tale Month, and Nursery Rhyme Days. The students are involved with special STEM activities, crafts, role-playing opportunities, music and movement exercises, and interactive storytime in connection with our most loved pieces of literature. The children also enjoy class celebrations during the holidays. Whether we are dressed as one of the animals from Noah's ark in October or as a mail carrier in February, we love to learn about the holidays and celebrate!
2. Field Trips...
The Hatchlings Class is too young for off-campus field trips, but that doesn't stop them from exploring God's beautiful creation in the world around them. We take the 6-seat stroller outside any chance we get in order to visit the campus garden, fields, and beautiful wooded landscape at Divine Redeemer. We use the stroller trips as a chance to pray, sing, talk, and wave to everyone we meet on campus. We also explore different places through virtual field trips including the farm, the beach, and the rainforest.
3. Curriculum Features...
The Hatchling curriculum includes Jesus Time, pre-math, pre-reading, science, music, physical education, art, and character education. Since the developmental attention span of a Hatchling student is relatively short, we facilitate curricular learning through free choice and pull-out centers. A free choice center offers a guided play activity in which the students can choose to explore. For example, one of our science units focuses upon life cycles. During the life cycle unit the students can visit the free-choice science center where they are invited to explore toy models of the various life cycle stages along with picture magnets that show how animals change as they grow. The book center would feature picture books about life cycles and include puppets of frogs, butterflies, and chickens, etc. The curricular free choice centers are available for students to explore in their own way. Pull-out centers are also happening during the "Centers" time within our class schedule. A pull-out center would feature an organized activity for individual students to complete with the facilitated support of their teacher. For example, during the life cycles science unit the students complete a lily pad art activity in which the emphasis is placed upon the process rather than the finished product. Children are invited to the pull-out center which is located at the classroom table. They are allowed to explore the pull-out center activity for as long or as little as they choose in an effort to meet their individual developmental needs.
The Hatchlings also gather for Circle Time, Jesus Time, and Storytime throughout the day. These gatherings are brief in order to again meet the developmental attention span of a Hatchling aged child. We follow a Jesus Time curriculum called, "One in Christ" which is a Lutheran publication. The curriculum allows us to read and explore Bible stories through simple texts with visual props, puppet shows, songs, and games. Jesus Time is one of the Hatchlings favorite times of the day because they are encouraged to dance, be joyful, and praise the Lord! During Circle Time and Storytime the students are involved with language development activities as they learn new vocabulary through simple songs, fingerplays, sign language, and picture books.
The third component of our curriculum focuses upon establishing a beginning level of independence with self-help skills such as hand-washing, feeding, diapering and/or potty-training, resting, and self-regulation. We target these learning objectives by establishing predictive routines and structure, and also by displaying loving encouragement and modeled behaviors.
Technology is not heavily utilized in the Hatchlings Class, due to the young age of the students. However, we do utilize virtual field trip clips as well as music and movement activities on the iPads. We also utilize a private Facebook group for posting pictures of classroom activities in which only our current families are given access. Our families love that they can see what their children are involved with during the day through our posts.
5. Specials... Not Applicable
6. Electives... Not Applicable
7. Extra-Curricular Activities... Not Applicable
8. Lunch Hour and Rest...
The children have a morning snack at 10AM, lunch at 11:30AM, and an afternoon snack at 3PM. The students lay down on cots for rest beginning at 12:20PM.
The students have a morning outdoor recess on the Toddler playground at 10:30AM and an afternoon motor room recess at 3:30PM for those that stay for extended care. They also participate in class stroller walks when weather permits.