Bellevue Overlake Cooperative Preschool provides an exceptional experience and play-based education for 3 and 4-year-olds with inspiration drawing from the Reggio-Emilia educational philosophy. At our school, we cultivate a child’s academic, social and emotional growth in a supportive community with a beautiful environment filled with natural materials . Our multi-sensory and hands-on curriculum is developed through emergent themes that inspire the students natural desire to explore, creating opportunities to expand on their developmental interests, and laying a foundation for lifelong enjoyment of learning. Benefits of our Cooperative Preschool
Parent participation makes you an important part of your child's early education and creates a felt sense of safety for your child as they are introduced to the world of early education.
Our Parent Educator facilitates discussions once a month on helpful topics about life with a preschooler.
Classroom training for parents is offered by experienced instructors, allowing you to feel confident assisting the teacher.
On site sibling care coordinated by participating caregivers who are able to care for the children in the sibling room when not scheduled to work in the classroom.
Field trips for the Butterfly (4's ) group once a month and an end of the year field trip for the entire school. In the past we have visited: Issaquah Salmon Hatchery, Kirkland Storybook Theater, Seattle Aquarium, the local Fire Station, and many other wonderful places!
We now meet Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. 3's (Caterpillars) and 4's (Butterflies) attend on Tuesdays and Wednesdays together. The 4's (Butterflies) meet additionally on Thursdays.
Learning Through Play
Art exploration: play-dough to roll, easels for painting, crayons for learning to write, rubber stamps, nature inspired materials, and process art invitations
Craft projects: bi-monthly projects tied into the curriculum themes
Sensory activities: tubs of water, or rice, or sand, or beans to scoop, pour, stir, and run fingers through
Large motor skills: mats for tumbling, tunnels to crawl through, climbers and slides, balls to throw, trikes to ride, and tree stumps to climb
Small motor skills: blocks to stack, puzzles to assemble, shape sorters to solve, beads to thread
Imaginary play: dress up area for trying on new roles, dolls to care for, kitchen for “cooking”
Science experiences: seeds to plant, tadpoles to watch, items from nature to explore, and snacks to cook
Snack time: a place to practice social skills and table manners and to discover new foods, and an opportunity to practice staying seated
Our Educators create rich experiential learning opportunities utilizing emergent curriculum and a child-centered, play-based program.
A Typical School Day Caterpillars attend class on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.
Butterflies attend class on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Class is always from 9:30am-12:00pm.
9:30am - Arrival: Children are encouraged to learn life skills as they find their cubby, hang up their jackets, use the bathroom (with parental support if necessary), and wash hands. Children enter the class and are encouraged to explore various activities that meet their developmental needs.. A large part of the day is child-directed. Children have a variety of opportunities to explore, use their imaginations, manipulate materials, and create. Choices include but are not limited to: art, sensory table play, science exploration, block and loose part building, imaginative play, and pre-writing activities.
10:00am- Hall activities are opened for those who choose. This is larger motor activities like large blocks, an indoor slide with tumbling mat, hopscotch, and an exploration table with seasonal objects. Some children need more movement after they do crafts and small motor activities.
10:15am- Clean up time. We encourage all children to participate in our community by taking care of the classroom. Sometimes children are not ready to participate and they have the option of finding a book to look at and have a seat on the carpet where circle time proceeds.
103:0am- Circle Time: Children choose a book to explore and practice sitting quietly until the teacher led activities begin. While most of the children are not yet able to read, they practice thinking about what the story is about by looking at the illustrations and observing the sequencing of the pictures as the stories unfold. Orienting themselves to the books supports their pre-literacy skills. Teacher led activities include a consistent welcome song and a song that supports circle time behavior. This mixed-age circle time gives both classes an opportunity to practice listening and participating in a large group. The younger Caterpillar class is working on staying seated and discovering how to be in charge of their bodies during circle time.
10:40am-The Caterpillar class is released for outdoor learning. They practice finding their jackets, putting them on independently, and dressing in layers of warmth as the weather necessitates. Then they line up quietly to go outside with two parent teachers. The Butterfly class continues their circle time with developmentally appropriate activities to support their kindergarten readiness such as Hand Writing Without Tears, months of the year, and more advanced science and math concepts.
10:55am - Butterfly class lines up to wash hands and transition to snack. Children learn to be patient, stand in line, and practice healthy hygiene with adult supervision. Snack is facilitated by parent teachers. Children are coached on respectful table manners, staying in their seats, inside voices, trying new foods, taking a shareful amount, and cleaning up their area. We encourage children to practice serving themselves, respectfully voicing their requests for snack bowls to be passed to them, and cleaning up after themselves. A variety of vegetables and fruits are prepared for snack. The snack menu is guided by any intolerances or allergies. We are a nut free preschool.
11:15am- The Caterpillar class transitions indoors to wash up for snack. During snack, the Teacher reads a story related to the emergent curriculum or shares simple HWOT stories, vocabulary, or playful concepts. The Butterfly class transitions to outside learning while the Caterpillars move from hand washing to the snack table.
11:35am- The Caterpillar class transitions back outdoors for mixed age social learning and gross motor activities.
12:00pm- Closing the Day: All children are on the playground awaiting parent pick up! Parents come inside to gather belongings, check their parent file folder for forms or fliers, and then sign their child out with the yellow apron parent on the playground. Then it is time to say "Good-bye!".
*The 2017-2018 school day schedule has been extended to noon.