Class Descriptions: 4 Day Class

For children 4 years of age by September 1
2016/2017: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday / 12:30 - 3:30 pm

The 4-Day Class prepares children for elementary school by familiarizing them with the concepts and skills, and classroom routines they will master in kindergarten. We provide concrete, hands-on experience in science, literacy, math, the arts, drama, public speaking, music/movement, social growth, and physical development.

School readiness programs that follow NAEYC standards teach that children need three things to be ready for school: social/emotional readiness, self-help skills, academic readiness – in that order. Children are provided with the means to gain confidence in all these areas.

Emphasis is placed on social competence, the primary indicator of kindergarten success. There are many opportunities to master sharing, learning to respect personal space, cooperation, decision making, taking turns, and taking charge of personal needs and possessions.

Academics are taught through exposure rather than rote memorization and drills. Students are exposed to the letters of the alphabet through books, the Weekly Reader, environmental print, and by learning how to write letters through the Living Letters program. Zoophonics, a kinesthetic approach to the alphabet, is used to develop phonological awareness. Each child creates their own ABC book which they are given at the end of the school year. Rhyming, alliteration, recognizing and printing their first name, storytelling in groups and individually are also used to teach literacy. Circle times provide more opportunities to develop cognitive skills, focus on print concepts, move to music, explore drama, and engage in meaningful discussions that develop oral language.

Math is taught through games, building with blocks, books, discussions with each other and the working parents.  Math is also incorporated into Music and Movement.

 Our outdoor environment is spacious, child-centered, and open for exploration throughout the day. Our ‘science deck’ offers a wonderful space in which to conduct experiments and to further investigate items found in the yard area.  To further enhance the science experience, once a month the class embarks on a hike in one of the many parks throughout the area.  During these hikes, the children observe a variety of habitats, search for different types of vegetation, animals and animal tracks.  At the end of teach hike, the children ‘journal’ their experience in their Nature Book.  Several field trips each year, in-class presentations, and monthly gymnastics lessons round out the curriculum.

A Day in The Life of a 4 Day Family

In our 4 day class, with a standard class size of 24 children, we generally have 6 working parents each day. Parents are expected to work one day per week, with an additional few days per year of "on-call" days. Once assigned a workday in the beginning of the year, parents will work on the same day each week, with the ability to swap with other families to cover sick days, vacation, etc.

While inside the classroom, there are 5 stations, each focused on different educational areas. When it is time to move outdoors, there are four stations and again, each focuses on a specific area of development.  Working parents will be provided a schedule in which they will rotate to different work stations each week.

When you arrive on your assigned work-day, you will grab a work-card with detailed written instructions for your workstation including setup, activity time, cleanup, and other details. While in the classroom, your focus will be on each child that decides to experience the activity/activities at your workstation. This is your chance to enable the kids to explore, get messy, and learn in an environment that encourages experiential education. While you remain at your workstation, your child(ren) will make their own choices on which stations to visit and which activities to engage in. Depending on their interests, some days you may see your child a lot, and other days you might not see them at all!

Working at a co-op means you are ready to engage with children and contribute to the school. Our school’s only paid employees are the teachers and a bookkeeper, which means that everything you see and love about our school, from its cleanliness, to its beautiful gardens and well-organized indoor facilities, are done by the families at our school. When you join our school, you join our community of families, dedicated to creating an outstanding preschool environment for our children.


Sample 4-Day Class Schedule

12:15PM Working and on-call parents should arrive and prepare for the day’s activities. The teacher will provide activities and supplies at each station and instructions to the working parents on what they will be doing with the children.
12:30PM Remaining families arrive, ready to start the day.
12:35PM Hello Time. This is when we welcome the day with a hello song, we learn about the month, day, date and discuss the weather. It is also a time for children to share a story, and to share with their classmates the activity/activities that their parent will be in charge of for the day.
12:55PM Activity Time/Indoors. Parents will work at their assigned stations (Art, Kitchen, Math, Language and Blocks) while the children explore freely inside the classroom choosing for themselves which stations and activities they want to experience. Children can choose from the organized activities or free play indoors during this time.
1:45PM Clean Up Time #1/Set-Up. Children will work with the parents to help put away toys, and parents, according to their work-cards, will work to clean and sanitize the necessary areas. Parents will then set up any outside activities.
1:55PM Activity Time/Outdoors. Parents will work at their assigned stations (Science, Painting, Bike/Lawn and Sandpond) while the children explore freely outside, choosing for themselves which stations and activities they want to experience. Children can choose from the organized activities or free-play during this time.
2:40PM Clean up Time #2. Children will work with the parents to help put away outside toys, and parents, according to their work-cards, will perform any necessary further clean-up tasks.
2:45PM Circle Time #1. Children will be broken into two groups, and while one group goes inside to experience circle time, the other group will enjoy free-play outside. Parents will be assigned either as outside monitors, or to help with circle time, according to their work-cards.
3:10PM Circle Time #2
3:30PM Goodbye Time. Working parents complete their job card tasks, and everyone says farewell until the next class!