Summerfield’s preschool program strives to make the transition from home to school as gentle as possible by creating a classroom setting that feels homelike. At the age of three, children are just beginning to interact with their peers and they naturally imitate the world around them. It is through active play with each other and work with their teachers and peers that these children develop a foundation for future learning.
The Rosebud Preschool “home” is designed to provide opportunities for the young child to recreate the activities of daily life that they witness every day. We have a bustling Sunshine Kitchen, with plates, pots and pans. Seashells and river stones serve as inspiration for many meals. Wooden stands, boards, play cloths and clips allow for construction projects of all kinds. Welders and electricians can fix any malfunctions that might arise! Kings and queens can adorn themselves with silks and crowns. The cozy corner allows little mothers and fathers to care for their “babies” with devotion and love. Less formed play things – like wool roving – have limitless potential for inclusion in play: frosting for your cupcakes anyone? Our toys are made of natural materials that are inviting to the touch; they stimulate the imagination, which in turn creates valuable play.
On bun day, our morning work includes the grinding of wheat, and the kneading of dough. On rice day, we stir and mix our sesames seeds to season our grain. Farm day chores include feeding the chickens and combing the bunnies’ soft, velvety coats. Every day the table must be set with our placemats, napkins and china cups. Our room is kept tidy and seasonally decorated too. We are joyfully busy with the care of our home at school.
Our outside play yard is blessed with many trees, a garden and pathways that wind from the sandbox to the swings and back to the wooden gate. There are flowers to care for and a wooden house that might be a carpentry shop, a horse barn or a bakery on any given day. Our big chair swing, our rainbow hammock and many leafy branches for climbing insure that we have plenty of space for quiet and reflection when needed. Tools for gardening, hauling, watering, raking and sweeping are always at hand. Our slide allows for lively games of train ride and sledding and our basket with pulley makes it possible to transport all kinds of treasures to the top of our play house!
Like traditional Waldorf Kindergartens, the Rosebud Preschool follows a rhythm of the day, week and year. Seasonal festivals such as our Harvest Tea and May Day Dance are favorites; birthday celebration days include special bouquets of flowers, a slightly sweet treat with our morning meal, and a wee gift for the celebrants. Language is joyfully developed through songs, circle games and stories. We sing sweet tunes throughout the day: during our morning greeting, at circle time, on walks, while working, and to bless our meal. Through storytelling and puppet shows, the child’s world expands and the imagination is kindled. Through all of their experiences at the Rosebud classroom, the children come to know that the world is a good place to be and that we are ever so happy that they are here!
Rosebud hours are from 8:30am to 12:30pm. The 3-day program, which is Monday through Wednesday, has aftercare available until 3:00 p.m. The 2-day program is on Thursdays and Fridays.