יוגה ומוּדָעוּת עצמית
In addition to scheduled classes with visiting yoga instructors, our teachers practice yoga, mindfulness and breathing techniques with children on a daily basis. Developing a toolbox of mindful breathing and relaxation strategies can help the social emotional development young children in many ways. Daily morning meetings begin with breath control to help children come to a place of tranquility; ready to share and listen. The mindfulness skills learned in group settings are something we return to frequently.
Our children walk around Barefoot there are many benefits to walking around connected to the ground. Some of the benefits of walking barefoot are; it develops a sense of body awareness and proprioception, develops a natural, healthy gait, strengthens the feet and body, healthy for cognitive development, improves safety, and provides a direct connection to our natural environment. Here is some more information on the benefits of being Barefoot;
We believe that healthy eating habits start young, which is valued by our community. Together we work with our community in establishing these healthy habits. A child's body needs good nutrition not just food. With a lot of thought and preparation we cook fresh lunch on site daily using vegetables and herbs from our garden. Snacks are prepared fresh daily. We serve Kosher food and a diet high in seasonal fruits, vegetables, grains and proteins.
The context of our outdoor environment is designed with intention and purpose. The gardens are treated as their own atelier. Providing the children with rich hands on learning experiences. Early childhood is the time to plant the seeds of wonder. Allowing our children to explore and discover for themselves the marvels of nature. Positive values such as respect, empathy, and responsibility, are practiced daily through animal care. Through observation children learn about animal behavior, instincts and intelligence. Through animal experiences, the children become more curious, respectful and appreciative of living things. Our children are exposed to different aspects of nature daily and develop a sense of wonderment and appreciation for life on Earth.
We love and appreciate music at Barefoot! The language of Music is an ongoing daily composition at Barefoot, and used as a gathering tool within our community. The children are exposed to many aspects of music such as literacy, rhythm, notation, and movement. Techniques such as call-and-response allow children to engage in musical conversation and improvisation, building communication skills, developing children's confidence and individuality within the context of the social group. Not only does it ignite child development, music helps the body, soul, and mind work together. "Music is a world within itself, it's a language we all understand."
In nature children can be who they are. The richest learning happens when we are outdoors. In nature there is an ongoing development of curiosity. Nature makes people feel at home and in the now. In the context of being outdoors we are present and are full of wonder. When we are outdoors we have space within us to not only connect to the context of the environment but to others and our inner self. Our children learn to take risks, develop confidence, and resilience. So you might be wondering how this works? At Barefoot every child has the opportunity to go on adventures outside of the school.
"When I am in the forest I can find peace in myself".
When belief in caring for nature and caring for self informs action, it brings meaning to our day. Practices that teach these skills are not isolated to blocks of time in our schedule, but run like threads through value, daily practices and acts.