Welcome to a new school year! I know you have already begun with class playdates and your little ones are eagerly anticipating a new routine. Perhaps you are, as well!
The Reimagined Playground is taking shape nicely and being readied for submitting the certification application to become a Nature Explore Classroom. Thank you to Shane Grotjan, James Halleck, Jaime Robles, Jenn and Charles Kemble and Linda Foley (and others) for the recent work including LOTS of weeding, new raised beds for the Sensory Garden, a **NEW** xylophone for the “Music by the Magnolia” area, and new signage for each of the nine (9) required areas. I am asking that all our parents help us preserve the integrity of the new features with the following thoughts.
The dry creek bed is comprised of many small rocks and a new pump for water play. We adults are going to need to be extra observant to make sure that the rocks do not migrate, the pump does not get filled with mud (the lid has already been snapped off), and the xylophone and mallets remain viable enhancements.
The teachers will clearly explain the limits and offer alternatives for the kind of play in which we see the children wanting to engage. We want to give the children a place and a space to explore their desired activity, so here are some phrases to guide your interaction:
- “These rocks are only for our creek bed, so the water can run through our creek.”
- “There are other rocks that you can dig in big sandbox or around the playground area.”
- “The funnel is for water, so let’s go to the hose spigot and fill a container for pouring.”
- “You are welcome to play with the rocks and make collections right here. We don’t want the lawn mower to be jammed with rocks in the grass.”
- “The xylophone mallets are for making music.”
As we start the school year, please develop the habit to pay extra attention when you are supervising to help establish and reinforce these limits to make sure that our playground space and materials continue to remain welcoming, safe and functional.
As always, thank you for your help. We couldn’t have the extraordinary program we offer at our little school without our engaged parents.
Best in parenting,
Ginny Hacker, Director