We welcome children at all our Purple Elephant centres anytime from 8am, half an hour before the start of the school day; this allows our children to greet their friends and teachers and play together in a relaxed environment, making for a gentle transition from home to school.
We begin every day with our Morning Meeting ritual; this special time together allows us to make connections with each other through play, discussions, songs and books, and provides an anchor in the day to ensure children feel welcome and at home. When children feel secure they are more equipped to explore, learn, and practice social-emotional skills. The children are then invited into our centres and ateliers, where they take an active role in their own learning. Through open-ended provocations the children are given autonomy to explore their own curiosities and interests, through loose parts, clay, painting, natural materials, mark-making, dramatic role-play and more besides.
In our Atelier of Sound, Atelier of Light, and Atelier of Water, the children enjoy abundant opportunities to become researchers, to delve into the aesthetic and sensory experiences of music and dance, experiment with design, and deepen their conceptual understanding of the world around them. After morning snack time, the children venture into our beautiful outdoor spaces; this is an opportunity to explore their bodies through adventurous play in the treehouses, swinging, climbing trees, and to explore all the gardens have to offer as the children become budding naturalists.
Following outdoor activities, we invite the children back to the centres and ateliers again, a time for individual exploration and collaboration for Project learning, where the children take on the role of co-learner with their teachers and peers, bringing their unique creativity and imagination to the learning journey. The children come together for lunch, another time we see them increasingly seeking out authentic interactions as they grow in confidence, before we gather for our ‘Goodbye’ circle time.
Over the past few weeks, we have seen the children at our Purple Elephant toddler centres truly build their sense of identity and belonging as they spend time with their peers and teachers developing their relationships and nurturing a warm, enriching community.