Best Beginning offers an Annapolis Twos Program based in Montessori, Nature Education, and Reggio-inspired teaching.
|Best Beginning Twos Class Schedule|
|9:00||Arrival & Interest Areas|
|10:00||Clean up song|
|11:00||Goodbye song circle with parents|
Students who turn 2 by September 1st of the school year are eligible for the Best Beginning 2s Program. Being potty trained is not required for entering 2s students.
“Within the child lies the fate of the future.” – Maria Montessori
The Montessori component of our early childhood toddler program encourages learning to use independent centers that focus on pouring, transferring, color mixing, food preparation, hammering, cutting, sensory bottles, sandpaper numbers and letters and the sensory table. Art projects are designed to help the child experiment with different materials as independently as possible. We know art is not about an adult’s pre-conceived idea, but about the process of having fun and self expression!
The Nature Education component of the preschool for twos covers themes focused on seasons, animals, and nature. Art often involves use of natural objects. Children learn to help take care of our pet guinea pig and observe and feed “visiting” turtles, snakes, fish, frogs and butterflies. We always include a unit on plants and seeds and spend time growing our own inside and outside class garden.
An important part of Nature Education for the twos class involves use of the outdoor classroom. The classroom is designed with several different learning areas including:
- Music and Movement Area with an outdoor stage and instruments
- Gardening Area
- Ride on Toy area
- Climbing and Crawling Area-low ropes course and small zipline
- Nature Art and Building Area
- Meeting Area
- Messy Play Area
The twos class Reggio-Inspired teaching focuses on the belief that the child is capable, resilient, and rich in knowledge. Children are encouraged to take the lead in investigating science, art, and sensory activities and offering their own observations. The child’s own words are often captured and posted on the wall with artwork or photographs. Many open-ended materials are offered throughout the school. This encourages the child to use his/her own inborn sense of wonder to experiment. Students often create a unique sculpture with playdough, use art materials in a different way or change a dramatic play center to emphasize a different play scheme. This thought and creativity is encouraged and the teacher acts as a partner in these efforts.
Also included in the Reggio-Inspired twos program is the belief that children form an understanding of themselves through interactions with others and that the physical environment of the classroom is very important to learning. During morning meeting, we often ask questions and and participate in collaborative activities such as parachute play or simple games. The class activities are carefully set up to encourage interaction between students. The classroom is full of natural light, and is well organized. Real learning tools are used whenever possible and many learning centers are made from natural materials. We are always learning from the students about what works and what does not work! This approach keeps things fun and engaging for everyone.
Sample twos class agenda
The schedule is emailed to parents prior to each class:
This week’s Theme:
The 5 senses, parts of the body, class names
Twos group class
Arrival & interest centers
|Art:||Create a face with fruit, cheese and pretzels (focus on vocabulary for parts of a face), easel painting|
|Practical Life:||Pouring practice, cutting, hammering, color mixing with pipettes|
|Science:||Observe the pet toad, feed him a cricket|
|Sensory:||Water play, play dough, sensory bottles matching scents (use your nose), egg shakers matching sounds (use your ears)|
|Dramatic Play:||Using the doctor’s kit to talk about body parts|
Snack, pour your water / Read: Funny Face, homemade snack
|Clear your place/potty break|
Warning bell & song and clean up
|Opening Song:||The More We Get Together|
|Poem:||Two Little Blackbirds with puppets-antonym work|
|Game:||Who is missing? Close eyes, cover one child with blue scarf, open eyes and guess “Who is missing?”|
|Feely Box:||Use just fingers (sense of touch) to figure out what is in the box. Can you tell us about what you feel?|
|Sing and move:||“Head, Shoulder, Knees and Toes”|
|Group Gross Motor:||Ring Around the Rosie-first SLOW then FAST|
|Transition:||Magic carpet ride-get on the magic carpet and ride to the door! Practice saying “STOP” and “GO!”|
|Art outside:||Painting with our feet|
|Water play:||Watering cans and garden|
|Ride on Vehicles/dancing and drumming|
|Clean up/Park your vehicles|
|Goodbye Circle and song with parents|