Rhythm is at the heart of everything we do at Four Seasons Kindergarten. The same basic daily pattern gives tamariki security and they know what to expect. Their sense of belonging is deepened from knowing what comes next. Tamariki trust in their day, their kaiako and the environment.
We begin by making bread rolls or hanging out the daily washing. This is seen as an inward breath – a time for calm and concentration. Tamariki may choose to partake in this activity or enter into free play.
Then we breathe out – tamariki play freely inside with toys of natural materials such as wooden blocks, handmade dolls ,dress ups, sheets and structures for hut building and items from nature such as shells and pinecones. These allow for tamariki to fully use their imagination and keep them in touch with materials of a ‘true nature’.
Another inward breath comes with morning tea. After we have said our blessings we eat our delicious bread and fruit. This is a time for sitting and eating – sharing a meal with friends.
Then we breathe out again as tamariki play outside. The outside environment offers many opportunities for large body movements eg. climbing, lifting, digging, pushing, pulling, running, jumping whether it be in the sandpit, in the ‘forest’ , in the log play area or the mudpit. It also offers a real vege garden and chicken house. Caring for the heihei (chickens) and planting, growing ,harvesting and eating the vegetables provides meaningful examples of real life interdependence.
When everything is tidied away we come together again for another inward breath. We sit and share a nutritious meal for lunch. Circle time follows and a story is told and then it is time for farewells for the new, younger tamariki who are in the early stages of their kindergarten journey. Those spending the afternoon with us settle into ‘camping time’ where they rest quietly.
The later part of the afternoon offers tamariki the opportunity for free play in which ever environment they choose. Our day concludes with a shared afternoon tea. We welcome whanau to join us for this time if you arrive early to collect your tamaiti.
Because rhythm is so important in building a sense of security for tamariki, parents are able to help settle children with a remark “I will be back after story-time or after afternoon tea”.
The days of our week have a deep rhythm in association with what kai is prepared each day. You’ll often hear tamariki saying “I come on soup day and pasta day.” They’ll also tell you which days their friends come on too.