Dear Preschool Families,
We couldn’t imagine a more wonderful first full week of school here in the TPS preschool! The children’s enthusiasm along with the beautiful weather led to countless opportunities for exploring, building, and even mud-kitchen baking in our beautiful outdoor classroom. Many children took the opportunity to sample ripe tomatoes and raspberries and to smell and taste-test a variety of herbs. The chefs in our messy materials area produced countless bowls of “wood chip soup” - occasionally flavored with mint leaves. We introduced our collection of large wooden yard blocks along with a new addition to our garden space: a multi-leveled water table system designed especially for four- and five-year-olds! From finding magical beanstalks amidst the perennials to skipping along the paths with new friends, your children have been enjoying each and every inch of our outdoor space. It has been a delight to watch them at work!
Indoors, our classrooms were full of the sounds of joyful children – exploring our play and work spaces and adjusting to classroom routines. Your children have already learned so much. By now they can tell you about morning meeting and closing meeting. They also know what to do when a teacher rings the chime and how to climb up and down the loft safely. As we work to establish our learning community, each classroom spent time discussing and agreeing upon rules for the classroom. The posted set of rules, signed by the children, is an important reminder of how to keep the preschool a safe and fun place for learning.
Beyond our immediate classrooms, the children continued putting names to the many new faces they met as they explored even more of their new school. We sculpted play dough in the sunlit art studio as Kait introduced us to that special place. We also spent time dancing with a parachute and visiting with “Grandmother Tree” in Meg’s movement class on Monday. Madeline shared a bit of Mexican culture in honor of Mexico’s Independence Day, and this morning we climbed the stairs to visit the music room for our weekly “Preschool Sing” with Chris.
A highlight for many was our first visit to Markward Playground where we practiced “holding the rope” as we walked along the sidewalk past the Lombard Building “where the big kids are!” And speaking of big kids, we were treated to a very special performance this afternoon when several middle school students visited us in the garden and introduced us to the TPS’ school-wide theme “What Is a Mystery?” in a delightful skit. After reading all of this, you’ll no doubt understand why your children are coming home so exhausted!!
We look forward to filling you in on the “mystery” of what happens in our classrooms each week; you can look forward to more weekly notes after the papal visit. Here are a few questions to ask your child about the busy week we’ve just had:
- What is your favorite thing to do in the garden? Did you play with the water table?
- What does Grandmother Tree look like?
- Did you like holding onto the parachute? Which color is your favorite?
- Which song do you like to sing with Chris? Do you have another favorite song?
- How many children can play together in the loft?
Some important upcoming dates:
September 22nd - Join us this coming Tuesday from 8:15 to 9:15am in the Garage for a preschool and kindergarten parent coffee. This will be an opportunity to talk with Carlye Nelson-Major, Associate Head for preschool-3rd grade, as well as members of our Learning Resources team about the first six weeks of school. We welcome your questions and wonderings. Coffee and pastries will be served. We look forward to seeing you there!
September 30th - Back-to-School Night(5:30-8:30 pm) We are looking forward to meeting with parents for Back-to-School Night. It’s an evening to learn more about the program, routines and practices in your child’s classroom. TPSA is hosting a Meet-and-Greet reception in the Garage and Garden at our South Street property for all preschool-third grade parents from 5:30-6:30pm. Feel free to join in anytime; the “formal” classroom part of the evening begins at 6:40pm in your child’s room. (Please note that this evening is for adults only; no childcare will be provided.)
*October 23rd *- Our annual fall visit to the Schuylkill Center (9:30am-1:00pm) Parents and younger siblings are invited to accompany us aboard yellow school buses as we adventure out to TPS’ official country classroom. More details will follow, but save the date if you can join us. (Rain date, if needed, is November 10.)
Enjoy a wonderful weekend!
The Preschool Team