Farmstead School Mornings for 1st-4rd graders 2016-17
A new program targeted at first through fourth grade homeschoolers.
This program comprises Tuesday and/or Friday mornings on the farm each week for 6-10 year olds seeking a different start to the school day. Children arrive at 8:00AM for morning chores and projects on the farm, and are picked up at 11:00AM Friday.
This program is designed to reinforce children’s connection to the living world and recognize their place and value within it. Through this program we seek to support children who may be bored, or taxed by a traditional school setting, and ground them in real work, which we have seen time and again increase their engagement other areas of their lives.
Program Description 2016-17
Many children thrive with the kind of start to the day that most people used to have—a morning that is rooted in caring, connection, physical activity, real sensory experiences, and strong rhythm. The farm offers a foundation that allows children to go into the rest of their day relaxed and confident, having already done real work and been valued for their contribution.
Mornings on the farm will include a carefully sequenced series of hands-on, side-by-side lessons with an experienced farmer-educator. Children will be given opportunities to watch, learn from direct instruction, try chores with supervision, then complete work independently. We work with children’s different learning styles!
- Feeding and watering livestock
- Collecting, cleaning and packing eggs
- Milking cows and goats
- Carpentry with hand tools
Farm life follows the rhythm of the seasons. In the fall we will harvest the farm’s abundance, dry flowers and herbs, and prepare the animals and farm for the cold ahead. Winter is a quieter time with a focus on keeping animals healthy and warm, and learning new skills, including wilderness lore and fire-making. Spring is full to bursting with planting, new babies, and new projects!
After chores are done, there will usually be time for a choice of activities, guided by the interests of the children. Possibilities include quiet “solo” time with favorite animals or trees, wilderness exploration, learning and practicing traditional skills like whittling and knot-tying, and free play.
A few times a semester the group will undertake a larger project, based in the emergent interests of the group. Examples include making an herbal healing balm or using farm ingredients to cook in the wood-fired oven.
Each day will end with a walk to the two neighboring schools (SCS and LCWS) to drop off children entering into their school day. Then, back to the farm for home-school pick-up.
Goals of this program include inspiring a deep connection to the land and animals, and building the capacities for confidence, independence, and joy in life.
Time: The program runs Tuesdays and Fridays 8:00-11:00 (sign up for one or two days). There will be three sessions each year, we are happy to prorate a session that may have already begun if there is still room.
Session 2: January 5 or 6 – February 23 or 24
Session 3: March 9-10 – June 1 or 2.
|8:00-8:30||Arrive, free play, join the farmers in the barn|
|8:30-9:45||Morning farm chores|
|10:15- 10:55||Chores or projects and closing|
|11:00||Pick up at the farm|
Price: $28/session or $25/session if attending both days
Clothing for the weather and the farm. We will get muddy and mucky often. For rain, children need raincoat, rain pants, and boots; in winter, winter parka, snow pants, and boots. It is a good idea to designate a set of outdoor clothes “farm clothes” if possible. A change of clothes is always a good idea in case we get wet through.
Dates for Session 2:
Tuesdays: January 10, 17, 24, 31, February 7, 14, 21.
Fridays: January 6, 13, 20, 27, February 3, 10, 17, 24.
Dates for Session 3:
Tuesdays: March 7, 14, 21, 28, April 4, 11, 18, May 2, 9, 16, 23, 30.
Fridays: March 10, 17, 24, 31, April 7, 14, 21, May 5, 12, 19, 26, June 2.