Programs

Other Annual Costs:

Registration:  $75

Materials Fee:  $100

Our Classes

2 – 3 Year Olds. The rhythm of our Yellowbird school day begins with a variety of open-ended activities for the children to explore. Discovery and exploration of materials such as playdough, markers and crayons, paint, shaving cream, stickers and blocks encourage children to use their imagination and creativity while also supporting the development of fine motor skills.  Circle time for our 2-3 year olds is an introduction to group gathering time.  We have two circle times each day which become progressively longer over the course of the year. During circle time we read stories, sing songs, do fingerplays, use instruments and move to music. Our enormous playground has climbing structures, trikes and ride-on toys as well as play houses and a large sandbox where children develop large motor skills which help young bodies to get strong!  

As the Yellowbirds develop their social play skills they are supported and encouraged to make choices, take turns, use self-help skills and participate in small groups. We support our children as they learn to persevere through tasks. This environment of routine, support and trust enables children to separate from their parents and begin to develop their independent selves in a fun and engaging atmosphere.

3 – 4 Year Olds. Our Bluebird school day has routine and structure. It begins with free-play in our enormous playground. We provide a variety of rotating activities at the tables such as playdough, Legos, painting, collage-making, cutting with scissors, markers, and more, all of which support young children as they continue to develop fine motor skills. We gather together at circle times where we share songs, games, fingerplays and stories. We read aloud to the children every day and our teachers use books and stories as a spring board for discussion, questions and art activities. The Bluebirds play on our climbing structures, build with outdoor blocks, dig holes in our sandbox and walk through the woods! These large motor activities continue to develop our children’s self-confidence, dexterity and balance and build strong bodies.  

Our Bluebirds create imaginative games with their friends where they begin learning how to communicate with one another, make compromises, advocate for themselves and resolve conflicts. Our teachers are their guides and mentors in this process.  

4 – 5 Year Olds. Overlee’s Redbirds begin their day on the playground, engaging in imaginative play with their friends, working on art or science projects at the tables or digging in the sandbox. Our program supports children as they develop and hone the social-emotional skills necessary to have positive interactions with their peers, solve problems together, play cooperatively, handle their emotions, and begin to understand others’ emotions. Our 4-5 year olds are busy throughout their day, moving from large-motor activities to fine-motor activities such as playdough, collage, painting, doll and animal play, and building with Lego and Magnatiles.  

Our Redbirds’ daily circle time gets progressively longer throughout the year. Circle time has seasonal themes and special songs, and a weekly rhythm. For example, we might journal on Monday, share stories on Tuesday, and paint or draw on Wednesday. All of these activities give our students the opportunity to practice turn-taking, speaking, and listening skills in a group setting. Redbirds also use circle time to work on big-kid skills like scissors, glue, early numeracy, and beginning handwriting. Overlee’s student-centered approach taps into the natural curiosity and wonder of young children! 

The Overlee Day

In our happy and stimulating environment our focus is on the process, not the product. The teachers provide a plan for the day that encourages creativity and curiosity, however, they also follow the child and adapt the plan accordingly so that each child can explore and engage in developmentally appropriate experiences.  New materials are constantly introduced and switched around the rooms.  Concepts and themes are extended for periods of time to allow for reinforcing and enjoying the lessons. The child’s own art and creations are proudly displayed through out the school.  Our Redbird class begins with a welcome activity and then transitions to free play.  Our Yellowbird and Bluebird classes begin their day with free play.  All classes then follow free play with the option to go outside before clean up and circle time.  Circle time includes a teacher directed activity including reading, singing and dancing.  Snack time follows.  Classes finish with outdoor play.  We go out to play in all types of weather.   Yes, even snow!

Here is what your children might find on a typical day:

Play-dough Table. Tactile activities provide children with a chance to develop their sensory processing and increase their dexterity. This is also a great place for some children to ease into the classroom by looking around and observing what is going on.

Dramatic Play Area. This is a wonderful play area. It might be a house, a doctor’s office, a post office, or a kitchen. By playing out the adult roles they see around them, children build identity and self-esteem, as well as enhancing cognitive development.

Group Time. Each class has one or two circle times per class session, led by the teacher. Everyone sings, dances, listens to stories, talks about classroom issues, and experiences being part of the large group while honoring children’s individual needs with flexibility in how children participate.

Snack.  Snack is one of our group activities. Socialization and polite table manners are taught. Also, hand-eye coordination is practiced though passing the snacks to one another.

Manipulative Activities. Each classroom has a wide variety manipulative toys and activies to offer the children. Items such as patterning blocks, pegs, puzzles, beads, and building sets, offering many different ways for kids to work on their fine motor skills and consider cognitive concepts such as patterning and matching and grouping different objects.

Art. As young children explore art, they learn about color, shape, form, technique while building coordination and creative expression and practicing fine motor skills. Our goal is to have children explore a variety of techniques through structured crafts, painting at the easels, letting kids just cut paper and use glue, just to name a few.

Bike Deck. There is a bike deck where the children can ride on trikes, cozy coupes, three wheeled scooters, plasma cars, and more.

Sandbox. The sandbox is a great place for learning about sharing space and cooperation. As children explore the sand, they are building motor skills, coordination, scientific understanding, problem solving, and teamwork. Our sandbox is not only spacious but has gems and buried treasure within.

Climbing Structures and motor skills activities. Children learn self confidence, balance, spatial awareness, motor planning and proximity as they explore our castle structure, climbing net, and merry go round.

Music. We encourage children to learn the joy of singing, and some of the foundations of understanding of pitch, tempo, and music as artistic expression. Musical instruments are always available to the children both inside and outside.

Sensory Activities. In addition to our frequent indoor sensory activities, the playground outdoor classroom offers many opportunities for sensory exploration. We have tables and pools for activities such as water play, shaving cream play, or  melting ice blocks.

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Lunch Bunch

 

Redbirds and Bluebirds have the option of staying from 12 – 1:30pm for Lunch Bunch. They eat lunch together either in the Redbird room or outside, and continue playing until pickup. The cost of lunch bunch per day is $10.

Enrichments

Science

In each science class the kids will participate in hands-on science experiments to learn about the world around us. We predict, observe, experiment and draw conclusions. They may go outside to collect materials for their experiments. Some examples of what they may do are; make soap, learn about germs, learn about spider webs, and much more.

Music

The children are taught by an experienced music instructor who nurtures the childrens inner sense of musicality by exposing them to fundamental musical concepts in a fun and playful way – in keeping with the Co-op’s philosophy of learning through play. She uses songs, chants, and rhymes to introduce concepts including loud/soft, fast/slow, high/low, and pitch and rhythm matching. Every class also incorporates dance, and an exploration of various musical instruments.

Yoga

In each class the kids will explore and express themselves through Yoga sets with nature and animal based games, dance, and song to stimulate, encourage and enhance the health, intuitive awareness, and creative freedom of their young spirits.  Yoga helps children develop coordination, balance and flexibility, encourages calm feelings, and boosts confidence.

Summer Camp

Our summer camp, known as PurpleBird Camp, provides school continuity for children over the summer in a playful outdoor setting. It begins the Tuesday after Memorial day and runs for eight weeks. The schedule is the same as the Redbird and Bluebird day, Monday through Friday 9:15-12 with the option of adding Lunch Bunch until 1:30. We also have a special camp for the Yellowbird families that begins the same day as Purblebird camp and runs for two weeks. At that time, all Yellowbirds who have turned age 3 by the start of camp and are potty trained may attend PurpleBird Camp.

Purplebird Camp is solely outdoors. It is full of water play and we bring the classroom outdoors. Children can paint and do crafts outside. They can wash and hose down the cozy coups and cars, they can make magic potions in the water tables. Purplebird Camp is a wonderful chance for your child to just have fun and be outdoors!