Arriving On time vs Late
Part of what I do for children is create a safe and predictable space. In this space there is more freedom from stressors that detract from the child’s work--which, at this stage, is growing and playing and strengthening the social and bodily forces for later learning.
The container for safety is built largely using a rhythm of the day. Morning circle, outdoor playtime and snack time, for example, are the knowns which hold children for the unknowns of creative, imaginative play and mishaps of preschooler world. Therefore if a child arrives after 8:30am the day at Little Quail School has begun and a child coming in the middle of a story or circle enters the rhythm at a different point than a child arriving before the beginning of the day. The predictability is lost.
When children come at different points in the morning, I have found that it does not serve the child well. It is also disruptive to the other children and me.
While I am waiting for a child to come I have to keep the space more open and part of my attention is tracking the front door and the arrival of the child/children we are waiting for. I don’t land in that calm space I like to be for the children’s nervous systems. The more steadiness there is for children, the more creative their imaginative play can be, which helps integrate learning and strengthen the mind as well as social connections. Steadiness, rhythm, predictability all also support the rhythm within the body and the ability to be both active in play and restful during rest.
With all this said I do appreciate that some mornings it is just difficult to get out the door. Please know that I understand and also know that rhythm is good for adults as well.