Our School and Its Programs

Each classroom at Maple Street creates a daily schedule that meets the rhythms and needs of its children.

Each day begins with Circle Time. This is a time when the children gather together to find out the schedule for the day. Children may choose to sing, dance, or share something with the larger group at this time. Younger children learn to listen, to take turns, and to follow directions.

Reading a book

Reading a book

Each day the classes have Choice Time, when the children choose an activity to participate in. This gives them a sense of ownership of their time and gives them an opportunity to develop new interests, friends and skills. During this time, we also work on curriculum-based projects and studies in small groups or one-on-one with teachers.

Each day also incorporates Story Times. We believe children develop early reading skills and a love for reading when they are exposed to stories and books. Our school library area is always open for children, and throughout the day you will see children reading with their teachers. Often, teachers will take smaller groups of children to the public library for specific research or simply to encourage the children’s interest in books.

A Nature Walk at Maple Street

A Nature Walk

Weather permitting; we have outdoor play every day. We go to the Imagination Playground with all children, and to Lincoln Road Playground with Children over 2.9 years old. Outside, the children work on gross motor skills, make new friends and learn to control their growing bodies. We also explore Prospect Park and look at trees, birds, bugs and the world around us, In the 3’s and 4’s classes, we take about one field trip a month with the students in order for them to explore their neighborhood and to enhance the curriculum at school. We are near and connected to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, the Prospect Park Wildlife Center, the Brooklyn’s Children Museum and the Brooklyn Museum of Art.

When the weather is inclement, we have indoor gross-motor play/activities. This may include yoga, dance, hip-hop, balance-beams, bean bags, and other forms of physical activities.

With parent/guardian permission Maple Street can apply sunscreen/insect repellent on your child according to the directions on the label or your physician’s instructions.

Day Programs

Below is a brief description of the age-specific activities we offer at the Maple Street School. Children develop skills and interests at different times throughout the school year. As a staff, we look at the whole child and seek to support each child’s individual educational experience.

Two’s Class

Twos
We keep the twos projects simple and fun. In art, they finger paint, glue, make prints and experiment with many different kinds of materials. Two-year-olds are tactile and like to feel glue and crush play dough. They also like to use their bodies, so we offer many opportunities for the twos to climb, dance and run. We encourage their curiosity and nurture their imaginations. Throughout the day, the twos are encouraged to use their words and ask for what they need. They also practice self-help skills such as putting on their own coats, using the toilet, and washing their hands.

A supportive environment is at the heart of the school, and it is our objective to help the twos feel safe and fully enjoy their first school experience.

Threes
The threes are involved in more complex projects. One example is a study of the neighborhood. Children take a walk, observe what they see, and return to school to recreate the neighborhood in a group collage. They also create their own picture book and create their own neighborhood people out of cardboard. We encourage children to reflect on themselves and their families. The threes might create life-size self-portraits using a variety of materials and are encouraged to share descriptions, stories and pictures of their family.

Prospect Park

Prospect Park

The threes are usually interested in looking more closely at the world around them. We foster their curiosity by offering many ways to explore in and out of the classroom. Throughout the year, the threes are involved in storytelling, drama, cooking and planting.

Fours

Play

Play

Four-year-olds are eager to understand concepts, interact verbally with their peers and their teachers and have fun learning. The Maple Street School is a language-rich environment. The fours love to share stories and they often create characters and practice role-playing. Teachers help students make their own books at this age. Children dictate their words to the teacher for a number of projects. The fours look closely at the world around them and enjoy initiating learning activities. In the past, students have chosen to study bugs, trees, animals, food, puppets, and many more subjects. It is our pleasure to help facilitate and enhance the subjects that interest the students.

We challenge children throughout the day to prepare them for their kindergarten days ahead. Our program goal is for children to develop a love of learning, have fun, make friends, and create memories that will last a lifetime.

Classroom Schedule

Arrival / Café 8:45 am-9:30 am
Morning Program (for 2’s) 9:00 am-12:00 pm
Afternoon Lunch (all students) 12:00 pm-12:30pm
Rest Time for full-day students 12:30 pm-1:30 pm
Afternoon Program (for 2’s) 1:00 pm-3:30 pm
After School Extended Hours 3:30 pm-6:00 pm
Afternoon Cafe 3:30pm

Children should be dropped off at school by 9:00 am. It is very distracting to the children and to the staff if children are brought in late. Families are required to pick up their children on time at the end of each session. We have Rest Time immediately following Lunch Time so it is critical for Morning Program students to be picked up on time at 12:30.

Lunch!

Lunch!

Late Pick-up Fee
A late pick-up fee will be charged to families of children picked up later than 12:30. In the afternoon, there is a ten-minute grace period for children who are picked up late. An after school program card will be purchased for children picked up after 3:40 pm. After school children who are picked up after 6:00 pm will be charged a dollar a minute thereafter with a minimum charge of ten minutes.

Please refer to our current payment and fee guidelines for updated information on tuition and late pick-up fee information.

Phase-in
Your child’s biggest transition is when he/she enters school. The teachers and administration support this transition by sending you information and resources, conducting meetings for new families, and beginning school gradually over a period of several days. The parent cooperative is also available to support your family during this time.

After School

Maple Street offers an enrichment and childcare program each day after school from 3:30pm-6:00pm. Our after school has specialists in music, drama, nature, dance, art and Spanish, and, of course, snacks and play. The after school program celebrates diversity, and its curriculum reflects the arts and culture of all of our communities. For example, our after school has community classes and concerts featuring local musicians including a drummer from West Africa, a dancer and singer from Mexico, and a marching band.

Jumping

Jumping

Maple Street pays special attention to transitions of after school children. Children are combined with the support of their teachers, and after school teachers to create a cohesive group.

The after school schedule is:

  • 3:30 Transition
  • 3:45 Story Circle
  • 4:00 Cafe/Snack
  • 4:15 Choice/Project/Specialist (Literacy)
  • 5:00 Songs and Games (Diaper check)
  • 5:00 Choice/Project/Specialist (Math/Science)
  • 6:00 Final Good-byes

The after school is open to children and families not enrolled in the day program. Please call the school and ask to speak to the After School Director for more information, tuition and fees, and to enroll in our after school.

Summer Camp

A green painting

A green painting

Maple Street offers summer camp for six weeks during the summer with different weeks arranged by theme. Our camp features days filled with exploration and adventure. For example, we have had pirate camp, earth camp, construction camp, music camp and carnival camp. The summer program is also open to children and families not enrolled in the day program. Please call the school and ask to speak to the Summer Director for more information, tuition and fees, and to enroll in our summer camp.

Maple Street makes efforts to keep the transition to summer camp smooth while allowing access to the community. The program staff will pay great attention to your child’s teacher and group in the summer to ensure a smooth transition to our summer program.

Multi-age Groups

Friends on a walk

Friends on a walk

Maple Street firmly believes that there are benefits of working together with children of many ages. Multi-age groups foster children’s learning at their own pace, support a nurturing classroom, provide an environment that embraces diversity, promote leadership and create a community of learners. Multi-age groups also create an atmosphere of cooperation that is central to Maple Street’s philosophy.

Some classes combine 3 and 4 year olds, while other classes have times during the day where 2’s, 3’s, and 4’s collaborate. Within multi-age groups, we strive to meet each individual’s developmental needs, interests and challenges.

Additionally, our after school program is designed as a multi-age program.

Communication

Families learn about their children’s development, activities in the classroom and important news and information about the school in several different ways. Parents are welcome and encouraged to participate in circle time, spend time surveying the classroom, and talk directly with teachers before and after class. Families may visit any area of the facility at any time during operating hours. Families are encouraged to follow the guidance of teachers in regards to visits especially during transition/separation periods to ensure children are supported, and can separate successfully.

There are curriculum nights in the fall and the spring as well as parent/teacher conferences. The administrators and teachers are always available for additional meetings at a family’s request. Teachers and/or classroom liaisons also post regular emails about your children, classroom events, and projects on the school’s Google Groups list serve. News of events, committee meetings, school schedule and fundraisers are posted on the list serve as well. While important information is posted on school bulletin boards and in family mailboxes, the fastest and most up-to-date method of communication for the community as a whole is through the Google Group list serve. The Orientation Committee Chair will let you know how to join, and the Communications Chair may always be contacted if you have any trouble or questions.

Transitions

Growing

Growing

Our programs are organized and staffed to provide flexibility, stability, and to minimize the number of classroom transitions experienced by a child during the day and program year. Every attempt is made to maintain the continuity of relationships between teaching staff and children and among children.

Children arrive in their groups/classrooms and stay until 3:30pm. Special attention is placed on transitioning children to afterschool which is a cohesive multiple age group. The day program keeps all children together each year from September-June. For the summer and following year, teachers, friendships, and other factors are looked at to ensure a smooth transition.

What to Wear/Bring

Please send children in play clothes that can get messy, as Maple Street is a creative, messy place. Additionally, please send your children with appropriate clothes for the weather, including warm clothes for cold, rain clothes and boots for rainy days, and clothes such as hats or protective clothes for the sun. Finally, please send children in shoes that they can run in. Sneakers are preferable (please no flip-flops or party/dress-up shoes).

Maple Street will phone or meet with families if we do not have appropriate clothing for your child.

Maple Street is not responsible for lost or stolen items. Please do not allow children to bring jewelry or anything else of value that may get lost or stolen.

 

Please bring to keep in your child’s cubby:

  • A full change of clothes including a shirt, pants, socks, underwear and a sweater in a ziploc bag. Please label each article of clothing with your child’s full name.
  • A blanket and crib-sized sheet with your child’s full name in a sealed ziploc or other sealable plastic bag.
  • Sunblock
  • Diapers (if your child wears diapers), and diaper ointment with your child’s name on it.
  • Wipes
  • A delicious nutricious lunch each day (should be refrigerated and can be heated in the microwave). No peanuts or treenuts! (Maple Street Policy) No more than 6 ounces of juice. No transfats. Please bring one per cent or skim milk. (Department of Health Policies) (Unless you have a doctor’s note).
  • A family photo
  • Label everything please
Naptime for the Stars

Naptime for the Stars

Please do not bring:

  • Pillows (They are not allowed by the Department of Health unless you have a physician’s note)
  • Bottles are not allowed without a doctor’s prescriber’s note. Children can use labeled sippy cups when they are sitting. Children do not carry sippy cups or regular cups around.
  • Unlabeled clothes, sippy cups, and other items that may get lost.
  • Fancy clothes or jewelry that may get lost, dirty, broken, or stained.
  • Toys that are large, difficult to share or may be used as weapons. Teachers should be consulted if children want to bring in toys
  • Candy or soda
  • Peanuts, or treenuts
  • Maple Street School and the Maple Street School Teachers are not responsible for lost or missing items.

Breastfeeding is encouraged at Maple Street, please feel free to breastfeed in the lobby or classrooms. Additionally, if you are pregnant or breastfeeding and need special accomodations such as grown-up sized chairs, please let us know.

Health Requirements

1. Immunizations

Every child enrolled is required to have the necessary immunizations mandated by New York State health laws. Exemptions for immunizations based on religious or health grounds must be submitted to the school before your child begins attending. Your child will not be able to attend school without immunization records or an exemption letter.

Additionally, if the Department of Health opposes your exemption letter, it is your responsibility to work with them to be in compliance. Any missed school or attorney’s fees are solely the parent’s responsibility as related to religious or health exemptions. Please note, if there is an outbreak, the Department of Health may require all non-vaccinated children to be absent for a period of time.

2. Health Forms

A standard health form filled out by your child’s doctor must be submitted prior to the first day of school, and then again on each birthday. The form must not be more than a year old and must contain proof of state-required immunizations for your child’s age. Health forms will be provided by the school. Your child will not be able to attend school without them! Additionally, it is recommended that you make a copy for your records.

Health forms and other forms are maintained in a confidential file downstairs in the lobby. The files are kept current, and checked monthly to ensure health and compliance. The files are kept confidential except for authorized administrators/teaching staff/regulatory agencies (Department of Health) and medical personnel. If the parent requests the release of a medical or other form, consent in writing must be obtained from the parent or legal guardian.

3. Medication

Medication may not be given to your child unless you fill out the proper forms from the Department of Health. These forms will be given to you if they are requested. The school has staff who are trained and licensed to give medication, and it is required that these staff administer any medications.

4. Medical Emergencies

Emergency telephone numbers must be provided on registration forms and updated throughout the year so that school personnel are able to contact a parent in a crisis situation. Because hospital emergency rooms will not treat an ill or injured child without the consent of a parent, it is crucial that we are able to reach you in case of an emergency.

When Children Should Be Kept At Home

Please keep your child at home when a fever is present, if s/he has unexplained rashes, vomiting and/or diarrhea, conjunctivitis (pink eye), or other contagious diseases, such as chicken pox, lice, impetigo or ringworm. Please keep your child home when mucus from a cold is extensive or cloudy. Every effort is made to inform all parents in the cooperative when any child contracts a contagious disease. If you have additional questions about when to keep your child at home, please refer to the health and safety manual.

If A Child Becomes Ill while at Maple Street School:

Children that develop symptoms during the day are required to be picked up as soon as possible. The teachers and/or administrator will care for the child, and provide any required medical care including calling our health care consultant or emergency care if needed.

If a child has symptoms of a communicable disease:

The child will be separated from other children until he/she has been picked up.

Children can be given fever reducing medicine for one day with verbal permission from a parent. As Maple Street does not stock medication, parents will be required to purchase the medication.

If a caregiver/babysitter is picking up a sick child, Maple Street needs parent permission.

After the child leaves, all areas the child came in contact with must thoroughly sanitized.

The child must be cleared with a doctor’s note to return to school.

Absences

If your child will be absent, please contact the school to inform the teachers. If your child misses school, there will be no make-up days of any kind.

Birthdays

If you would like your child to celebrate his or her birthday with the school, please bring a snack for the entire class. Please do not bring anything but the snack. For those children whose birthdays fall during the summer, pre or post birthday celebrations can be arranged with your child’s teachers.

If your child will be having a party outside the school, please be sensitive and do not distribute invitations in school unless the whole class is invited.