This program is designed for youth 2-3 years and their parent(s) (or caregiver). Much like the Open Program (see page 15), this course offers time for youth to let their natural curiosity flourish. The program space will be stocked with developmentally appropriate materials that nurture Natural Learning and Flexible Thinking. This hands-on program will explore the numerous intersections of parenting and education and how, as parents, we can encourage and foster Natural Learning in our young people.
The first part of each day will include new activities for the youth and their parent to explore, along with additional rotating manipulatives and books. Parents are encouraged to follow their youth’s lead, which means that sometimes they may choose to engage in all of the offerings, while other times they may become engrossed in one particular activity and stick with that for much of the time. In addition to these activities, each week we will offer time for snack, reading and outside exploration on our 28-acre campus.
While the focus, of course, will first and foremost be on the young people during program time, it is also an opportunity for parents to meet like-minded individuals and expand their own peer networks. While the program is officially a two hour program, parents and youth are invited to stay late to socialize with other group members and eat lunch. This time serves as an opportunity for further connection-making as well as a chance to explore the OC property. Over the course of the program year, discussion topics will include the following:
Additionally, participants will learn about and explore:
The Pre-OP is a likely fit for families who: are strongly considering the path of Partnership Education and are looking to expand their network of like-minded individuals so when their young people are ready for the Open Program at age 4, they already have roots and connections in the OC community.