The Forest Class is a multiage class for children ages 4- and 5-years-old. The class is rich in outdoor explorations and project-based experiences and follows the Reggio Emilia inspired philosophies of the Willow School. To facilitate and enhance outdoor explorations, the class has a maximum ratio of 14 children with 2 teachers. The Forest Class is a multiage environment, which allows children to attend the class for two consecutive years if desired. After completing this program children will be prepared for pre-k, kindergarten or first grade.
Children in the Forest Class are immersed in a curriculum steeped in subjects relating to the environment, ecology and conservation. Children spend much of the school day outside in our onsite outdoor classroom or other natural environments. They also have a dedicated indoor classroom for project and small group work. The children drive the curriculum through their explorations of environmental subjects, which is further supplemented through hands on work, field trips and research of the classroom community. All learning domains are integrated into daily work and projects.
The Forest Class is also supported by the Atelierista (studio teacher) and the Music Teacher. Experiences in the studio may be independent of classroom work or connected to ongoing project work. The Atelierista will collaborate with the classroom educators to create continuity of learning as well as plan, research, observe and document children’s work. The Music teacher provides weekly music class and also works with children and teachers to incorporate music into the daily life of the students.