Sun Star Farm
Half-Day Transitional Kindergarten (T-K) and Kindergarten
Do you have a child who is not “quite" old enough to start Kindergarten?
Once your child is age 4.5, they are able to participate in T-K. As the parent, you can decide whether or not your child will participate. Some parents prefer to hold off incorporating academics until later, while other parents want to add academics to their child's weekly rhythm. We honor both decisions and their path.
In addition to being a part of the daily and weekly rhythm of the whole school, T-K children are with our Kindergarten teacher 4 or 5 days a week to learn letters and prepare them for their reading journey. Outside of T-K time, they are with the younger and older children for outside play, activities, snack, and lunch.
Our vision at Sun Star Farm Preschool and Kindergarten is to nurture the sense of wonder and curiosity in the young child through the sensory rich environment of our farm and surrounding forest. To create a safe and loving learning environment, through the attentive, nurturing care of our teachers, and to inspire reverence and gratitude for each other and the natural world through everyday exploration and care taking of our farm animals and garden.
Our classrooms are carefully crafted to facilitate imaginative play, tactile exploration, and experiential learning. Warmth and wonder are created using natural materials such as wool, silk, wood, stones and shells and open ended toys help to further fuel the children’s imagination and open their minds to infinite possibilities.
Every aspect of our Kindergarten curriculum is created to inspire imagination, fuel creativity, encourage freedom of thought and expression and promote creative problem solving. It is our goal that in this nurturing and creative atmosphere our Kindergarten children will gain the confidence and discipline, as well as practical, artistic and social skills necessary for success in the challenging academic world of school that lies ahead.
Kindergarten Daily Rhythm
There is a comforting rhythm and flow to the day that is based on the natural rhythms of the children and not on a series of activities dictated by a schedule...
A day in Kindergarten may include bread baking, chopping vegetables for stone soup, drawing and writing in their journals, collaborating with friends, painting, sewing, project time, building, reading books in our cozy corner, helping friends build a fort, feeding and grooming the farm animals, singing, exploring the creek, filling bird feeders, role playing, song and movement games, stories and puppet plays and so much more.
Predictable rhythms of the day, week and year provide security and confidence and establish a sense of time, sequence and predictability that are deeply nurturing to the children.
Free Play develops the child’s imagination and creativity, this forms the foundation for reading comprehension and learning abstract concepts. Through play children engage in compromises and negotiations, “trying on” different roles that help teach flexibility, adaptability and creativity. The amount and richness of children’s play has been directly linked to future executive functioning and the ability to self-regulate, which is absolutely essential to future success in life.
Exploration and Project Based Learning allow the children to follow their emergent interests and to create projects, journal entries and art work based on their explorations.
Tidy-Up and setting up for snack engage the child’s brain in pre-mathematical concepts such as ordering, sorting and one-to-one correspondence.
Practical Activities such as hand crafts, preparing snack, and feeding and caring for the animals are artfully modeled by the teachers with intention and joy, this fosters collaboration, empathy and mindfulness. In baking math skills are learned as we measure, use fractions (diving the apple into 8 pieces etc.) and count.
Circle Time with rhythmic movement and song helps build coordination, vocabulary, language skills, body awareness and develops gross and fine motor skills.
Story Time artfully created stories told from the heart and presented visually through handmade table puppets, develop listening comprehension, imagination and strengthen the capacity for memory and empathy.
Social and Emotional Development is embodied through creative play and collaborative projects. Empathy, social inclusion, sharing and kindness are modeled and practiced in all that we do.
Ready for First Grade?
We understand the academic standards of the public school system and as such have integrated our nature and play based curriculum to include the following skills necessary for entry into first grade. These skills, however, will be learned in a playful, engaging and artful way, using nature and our farm environment as much as possible. Picture the children collecting eggs: “How many eggs did the chickens lay today? What colors were they, how many brown and how many white? Let’s take a walk through the forest, can you find the letter Y in the tree branches. My, doesn’t that vine look just like an S?" We strive for tactile, experiential, whole child learning. Your child may come home saying they played all day and that is our goal - to foster a love of learning and quest for exploration.
In addition to outdoor learning, the academic fundamentals of our kindergarten program are...
Please email Heidi to schedule a visit and learn more!
School Calendar 2017-2018 Download PDF
My son has had the absolute blessing growing up at Sun Star Farm. We started out participating in the Parent-Child class when he was one. He easily transitioned into the preschool when he was two and a half. He is now five and currently in the Transitional Kindergarten and we couldn't be happier. It has been amazing watching our little boy grow, learn and play in such a nurturing and safe atmosphere. It makes my heart so happy that he is allowed to be a kid and enjoy the simple things like dirt, sunshine, fairy stories and love.
- L. Werrell
PRESCHOOL AND KINDERGARTEN
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