We strive to create a beautiful world and environment for your child to explore. We strive to create a playspace that feels warm, loving, nurturing and home-like and to have activities that reflect normal everyday life at home. Children learn primarily through imitation and so we strive to create an environment where the caregivers engage in meaningful and constructive work that are worthy of imitation. We strive to preserve the essence of childhood by providing an uncomplicated environment with mostly simple, natural toys and open-ended materials that foster your child’s imagination and creative abilities.
Our curriculum gives your child a sense of rhythm, balance, movement and Life. Our yearly rhythm is in harmony with the seasonal rhythm of nature. Our weekly rhythm is established according to the types of activities taking place (e.g., Art on Monday, Cooking/Baking on Tuesday, Gardening on Thursday, etc.). Our daily rhythm is balanced between very active and quieter activities. Outdoor time is a central focus of every day. Meal times and rest times are the same each day. Consistency, predictability and routine contribute to your child’s healthy development, as well as to a sense of security.
In this fast-paced, modern world, Holistic Beginnings provides a safe-haven for your child to learn and explore the world at their own pace. The richness of our natural, play-based approach has been demonstrated successfully at many similar early learning centers throughout the world.
Our curriculum will not only give your child a great foundation for their formal academic years but we will have also helped your child lay a foundation for a great quality of life.
Click on the tabs below to discover the methods that we use to support the development of the children in our care:
Our curriculum is developed in the format of play yet integrates language, art, math and science. The children learn primarily through imitation, hands-on engagement and multi-sensory experiences. They participate in art, handwork, construction, nature exploration, gardening and weekly field trips. They also develop practical life skills such as cutting, cooking, baking, table-setting, washing, folding, cleaning and sweeping. This early introduction to housekeeping instills in young children a sense of pride and responsibility for their surroundings, which often follows them home. Creativity is fostered through imaginative play, music, storytelling, movement, games, and artistic activities. Activities are age-appropriate and are tailored to the needs, interests and developmental level of each child.
Each child is provided the opportunity to explore their own interests at their own pace, make discoveries, construct knowledge and come to their own understandings of concepts and material. At Holistic Beginnings, each child is challenged to reach their potential as learners, producers, listeners, creators, problem-solvers and productive members of their community.
Through our carefully created playspace, through experiences that we provide, and through social interactions with their classmates, the children develop their own understandings of Life. Their imagination and creativity also flourish while maintaining a deep connection to the natural world around them.
Although we provide some guided-instruction throughout our curriculum, most of our day allows for learning opportunities to spontaneously arise as your child engages in play and just being who they are – curious, imaginative, explorative young souls just trying to make sense of the world around them.
- Indoor/outdoor play
- Whole group and small group activities
- Circle games
- Group discussion
- Real-life opportunities will present themselves daily for the children to learn to wait, listen, see things through, take turns, share, make decisions, resolve conflict, build resiliency, self advocate, develop autonomy, build self-confidence, show empathy for others, be compassionate and show respect for self, others and the environment.
- Seasonal Arts and crafts
- Dramatic play
- Imaginative play
- Building blocks, puzzles, modeling clay and all other hands-on manipulatives
- Creative movement and dance
- Music and song
Healthy eating habits are learned through play, cooking activities, guided instruction and by observation of the kinds of meals we provide daily. Our meals were strategically created to emphasize the importance of eating a healthy, plant-based diet instead of the more conventional diet of highly-processed foods. Instead of just instructing them on this, we are helping them to live it. It is our intention that the children develop a palate that actually enjoys eating plant-based foods and to gain their own true desire to choose the healthier options when choices are presented to them outside of preschool. This component of our curriculum is further emphasized when the children are growing their own vegetables in our organic garden.
Each Spring/Summer the children grow the most beautiful garden filled with organic vegetables, fruit and flowers. Not only do they get to witness the miracle of life growing and evolving after sowing a seed in the Earth, they develop their innate nurturing capabilities by loving and tending to the plants daily until it they are ready to be harvested. After harvesting, they put on their aprons, wash, chop, slice and prepare them for snacks and lunches here at preschool.
Sanitation and keeping a healthy hygiene is also a very important focus of our curriculum. Your child will learn about the importance of washing hands frequently, learn about germs and the purpose of cleaning and how to maintain a healthy hygiene. This will all be done through play, song, role-playing, storytelling, guided instruction, observation of staff and by participating in the acts of cleaning as well.
The Holistic Beginnings preschool curriculum’s whole foundation is built on the physical development of the children. Each area of our program integrates the development of both gross and fine motor skills. In addition to handwork, gardening, cleaning, cooking, table-setting, washing, folding, sweeping and nature exploration, gross motor skills are developed through daily outdoor play, indoor play, dance and creative movement. Fine motor skills are developed through hands-on manipulatives, sensory activities, fingerplay, activities that promote hand-eye coordination, personal care lessons and art.
“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.” – Aristotle.
Our curriculum does not focus on any religion, spiritual master, or spiritual concept; it encompasses the fundamentals of many spiritual teachings with an emphasis on core human values. The children are introduced to broad concepts of spirituality in a developmentally-appropriate manner with the intention of them awakening to their own truths and understandings regarding each concept. Below is a random sample of some of the concepts introduced during the school year:
- Spiritual-Awareness of all living things
- Mother Nature
- The Golden Rule
- Social responsibility
- Ecological responsibility
- And much more…
Concepts are introduced in many different contexts using many different formats. Formats include storytelling, arts and crafts, books, puppetry, nursery rhymes, poetry, song and role play.
The children may not understand the concepts at first; however, through constant observation and modeling of our staff, an intuitive understanding will eventually awaken within them. Connections, integrations and awakenings will also take place during the many opportunities that will spontaneously Present themselves while playing daily. We believe that nothing awakens the Spirit of a child more than the exhilaration experienced when having fun. Play is the window to your child’s soul and the key to their well-being.
The children get to learn where food really comes from by engaging in hands-on organic gardening. During the growing season, the children sow their own vegetable seeds and are responsible for nurturing them until harvest time. They get to pick their own foods and help prepare it for lunch and snacks. They also get to bring much of their harvest home to share with their family.
We take field trips several times per month. Field trips include trips to the library, museums, nature walks, hiking, wildlife sanctuaries, local farms, zoo, local parks, playgrounds, community trips, neighborhood walks, apple-picking and many more. This helps to further enhance the children’s learning experiences and bring what they have been learning to life.