The educational philosophy of the early childhood years at Avenues is based on an underlying respect for the individual child. With this in mind, we provide an environment rich in opportunities for each child to grow in their understanding of language and how to work and play with others.
Through one-on-one and group instruction, teachers nurture each child’s individual learning style and foster a love of exploration and discovery.
At Avenues, we begin the day with a morning meeting. where we share questions, feelings, interests, ideas and plan our day. Morning meeting also acts as an introduction to play-based learning activities.
After morning meeting, students can choose from a variety of carefully set play centers. Teachers set new centers each day based models for child development on what they have observed in their students. Students can choose from a sand table, water table, art center, science center, touch table, manipulative table, puzzle and games area, play-dough table, block center, dramatic play center, puppet theatre, drawing area, book corner. As children play, they imagine, create, learn how things work and come apart. The time spent and order of each activity is up to each child.
Later in the morning, children take their explorations outdoors, which are just as important as those in the classroom. From the trees above us to the landscape surrounding the school, we encourage children to roam as much as possible and engage with the natural world. As they explore, teachers help spark inspiration for larger projects. The first part of the day is concluded with a short circle time where we share our experiences, sing songs and read stories.
Lunch is served in the classrooms. This guides students towards mindful, healthy eating habits, as they learn about nutritious foods. After lunch, children can rest or take a nap.
The afternoon period is reserved for further investigations and inquiries, both in and out of their classrooms. Children may explore the science and design thinking labs, art studios, and music rooms, take wellness and movement lessons, or visit the open library.
END OF THE DAY
Before dismissal, students have one last circle meeting to talk about what we saw, heard, learned and felt, share "best part of the day". The class quiets down as they read books or chat with classmates. The day is concluded with a happy goodbye song, as we look forward to the next day together!