…the creation of safe and loving environments in which children learn through open ended play, explore their natural outdoor environment, learn problem solving skills and are provided with opportunities for creative thinking and self expression.
…an emphasis on learning through the arts.
…long periods of uninterrupted free time for exploration with open ended, child-selected materials.
…environments that do not rely on acres of posted rules and regulations but instead realize the importance of controlling the environment, not the little children in it.
…those who serve as facilitators for children instead of being the keeper of the keys and the boss of all the stuff.
…the adults who work with us in order to develop and cultivate such environments where children spend time with friends and family.
…outdoor play time with both energetic activity and quiet contemplation.
…the ability of children to be able to work through and master the developmental challenges that they face daily in these environments.
…freedom to laugh and play while being engaged in child-centered activities such as easel painting, water and sand play, color mixing, parachute games, singing songs, reading stories, squishing play dough, playing blocks, zooming cars, cooking and writing stories.
…the fact that cognitive growth and intellectual development occurs when children face a task, fail at it, succeed at it, master it and then repeat it over and over again!
…the smiles, and “ah-has!” of discovery as children realize, after the 25th time, that mixing red water with blue water still makes purple water!
…the facilitation of a love of learning by making time each day to create, move, sing, discuss, observe, read and play.
…mud pies, loud voices, tears, hugs, running feet, frustrations, dumping and filling, runny noses, tiny toes, capes, graham crackers and oranges, naptime, giggles and wiggles, puddles, shadows and stars.
…the creation of environments where children can simply be. Not be “getting ready” for something.