In a time when children are spending less time outdoors and more time in front of a computer screen or phone, we are prioritizing physical movement, time outside and active exploration.
Specifically, starting in pre-K each class goes on an outdoor expedition once a month that includes, hiking, bouldering, rock climbing, or water exploration with a professional outdoor education company. Additionally, starting in 2nd grade each class goes on an overnight hiking trip in the mountains. Throughout the school day, we provide children with a variety of movement options including, dance, yoga, and play to encourage health, stress management, cognitive development, and emotional regulation.
Physical education classes capitalize on children’s natural sense of play and competition. Physical education and yoga instruction allow students to experience all locomotor movement patterns (e.g., hopping, jumping, walking, running and galloping) and non-locomotor skills, such as bending, twisting, and turning. Through play and games, students develop a sense of their body in space; their stamina, strength, balance and flexibility; and hand- eye coordination. Students learn to be part of a team, working towards a shared goal, as well as what it means to be a good teammate and good sport. Just as they must practice spelling, math and any other skill, young children need to learn that being part of a sports team requires practice, patience and persistence. Whether it’s showing up to practice, waiting your turn on the sidelines, or doing the same drill over and over again, team sports translate into important life lessons. Outdoor education plays a prominent role in our physical education program. When outdoors, students experiment in the natural world and develop skills as they have meaningful whole body adventures. These educational experiences connect students with the place they inhabit, their developing sense of self, and the larger community.