With all the amazing gizmos and gadgets out there now a days, it is easy to get lost in a sea of cool toys! Have you ever noticed the length of time your child plays with certain toys? Sometimes the toys with all the bells and whistles don’t really do much, other than bells and whistles. Some toys may attract children straight to them, but if they can’t change it, create with it, problem solve with it or manipulate it, then they tend to move on rather quickly.
Through our HighScope Curriculum we carefully plan and plot our learning environment around children’s interests. Our classrooms provide diverse, open-ended materials that reflect children’s home, culture, and language. This gets the children instantly interested because it’s all about them!
Take a Tour of Some of Our Learning Environments Here At LT!
Sand & Water Table: This is where the children explore with sensory play! All our classrooms are equipped with sand and water tables. Sand and water play encourages hands on learning. Children will measure, mix, scoop, share, and sort! Odds are, a child will be met at the sand and water table with multiple friends. This play encourages groups of children work together, communicate, and problem solve!
House Area: We love to bring in the culture of our families in this area. Next time you go to throw away that empty cereal box, coffee can, milk jug, STOP! Let your child bring it in, they love seeing items from home in their classroom! Believe it or not… When you are away, the children “play” you all day!
Block Area: Oh the creations that have come from the block area! In this area the children explore with shapes and building. They learn through trial and error to build what they want! This is an area I see a lot of cooperative play. The children talk and work together to build a common interest!
Book Area: This area is warm and inviting! There is a cozy place to sit and books to read. Our teachers rotate their book shelves based on the children’s interest. It is ALWAYS a proud teacher moment when the children start requesting certain books to be put out!
Art Area: Open-ended materials galore! From learning how to use glue, scissors, tape, and markers, the children can create whatever they want! During play teachers will scaffold children’s learning by talking to them about the colors they see and the shapes they are drawing.
Woodworking Area: The children are instantly drawn to this area because… Yes there are real tools! The children get to explore with real hammers, wood, screws, nails, and more! They gain motor control through exploration and play. Don’t worry, there are wood working “rules” only two friends at the table and wear goggles and gloves for safety.
Writing Area: This is where you will find our HighScope Letter Links (children’s name tags) and a variety of writing materials! The children really work their fine-motor skills used for writing with chalk boards, white boards, lined paper, clip boards, gel pens, markers, chubby crayons and so much more!
Toy Area: Here you will find a variety of manipulatives, from dinosaurs, to puzzles, to people, and even magnifying glasses! Our materials are chosen to be open-ended. The children can take a toy and create something to do with it, are they pretending? Or building? Or finding? Or problem solving?
Music Area: Children can experiment and explore with making sounds! The learn rhythm and how to cooperate with others and communicate their ideas! Some rooms have a listening area where the children can put headphones on and listen to music.
Are you a parent of The Learning Tree? Comment below your child’s favorite area in the classroom!
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