more articles like this
Circle of Friends Children's Center
updated: Jun 11, 2011, 8:15 AM
Circle of Friends Children's Center (CFCC) is an award-winning, non-profit preschool that has served the Santa Barbara / Goleta / Montecito area for over 30 yrs. CFCC enrolls children ages 2 yr. 9 mo. through 5 years and is accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). Circle of Friends has recently been honored with the distinction of being named a demonstration site for The Orfalea Outdoor Classroom Project, Santa Barbara County.
The CFCC curriculum focuses on all aspects of the child's development: Physical, Social, Emotional and Cognitive. Although the Children's Center always appears informal, the program and environment are the result of careful and detailed planning with the best available knowledge of child development. Young children learn through their play. They need the flexibility and freedom to experiment, explore and cope with new and unfamiliar materials and social interactions. The teachers foster creativity in the child as he/she interacts with the environment. Learning to care for each other and the world around us is a central concern at the school. CFCC provides a large variety of constructive, dramatic and creative materials, and learning experiences. The curriculum includes many activities: block play, science and nature activities (gardening, pet care, nature study), creative art projects, dramatic play, cooking, large muscle activities (bikes, climbing structures), self awareness and the appreciation of diversity within the school community, language arts activities (stories, finger plays, poems, dictated stories), music, and math awareness through hands-on manipulation of objects in the environment.
Parent and Teacher Development
Parent involvement at CFCC contributes to building a stronger community at large. Life at home, at the Children's Center, and in the community are all interconnected and supportive of each other. The parents participate at the school by being a part of committees, attending meetings, and spending time with the children at the center and on field trips. Educational handouts, books in the library and parent-teacher conferences help the parents and teachers better understand each other and the children.
At Circle of Friends, the director and teachers set the stage for learning by creating a cross curricular, multicultural, non-bias learning environment which is nurturing and provides a safe and stimulating environment for the young child. They help children explore and experiment with what are both familiar and unfamiliar to them. Daily activities and projects are carefully planned with the child's interest in mind. The natural environment that is provided is stimulating, well organized and well cared for. CFCC teachers are available to listen, problem solve, tackle complex and challenging issues, and to celebrate the growth of the young child.
Attention is given to the environment at CFCC in many ways. They use non-toxic materials. They have a recycling program in which they collect food scraps and plant materials to add to their composting bin. Families bring in recycled materials to be used in projects at the center. The yard is planted with low-water-use plants and the children enjoy growing flowers and vegetables in the garden area. They also develop close relationships with the center's pet animals. The children and adults work together to take care of the inside and outside spaces at the Children's Center and in doing so, gain strong skills in taking care of themselves and the world around them.
Be the first to comment on this article.
# # # #