Another Great School Year at Tobin
It’s hard to believe another school year has come to an end. We’d like to share some highlights from our 2016-2017 school year:
- We were very proud to receive Accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). This was the culmination of a two year process and our accreditation shows we provide the highest national level of quality for early childhood education programs. This accreditation lasts for five years. Congratulations to all our faculty on this high honor!
- We piloted the use of the Ages & Stages Developmental Screening Tool. This parent-completed survey for all new students helped us start the year with extremely helpful information and allowed us to get the year off to a strong beginning.
- We hosted two early childhood leaders from Singapore through a Wheelock College Leadership Exchange and were thrilled to show them our program and learn about their own.
- We continued the use of the Peekapak Character Education program this year in our PreK, JrK and Kindergarten classrooms. We used their system of monthly themes and activities to focus on self-regulation, respect, teamwork, and optimism, among other subjects. We also hosted Peekapak’s Canadian developer, as well as a group of educators from other schools who viewed Tobin as a success story in its use of the program.
- We again used the very successful Wilson Fundations PreK edition in our PreK and JrK classrooms this year. This program showed its strong value in helping build solid phonemic awareness in our students as they move on to their next classes.
- We continued our Etiquette Curriculum focusing on table manners, introductions, and manners words this year with Janet Parnes, i.e. “Lady J” for not only our Kindergarten & JrK classes. And new this year, we also brought this program to our Morning PreK!
- We again offered small group piano instruction with the highly regarded Allegro Music School here at Tobin, showcasing the work of these young pianists at our annual Performance Festival this May.
- We loved our experiential learning with field trips to Honey Pot Hill Orchard for apple & pumpkin picking this Fall, a children’s theatre performance for Kindergarten this winter, and springtime trips for all our classes to Drumlin Farms and Southwick’s Zoo. We also continued our Kindergarten winter/spring visits to the Morse Library and included trips for both of our JrK classes, as well. We also hosted specialist visits from Southwick’s Zoomobile and the Acton Science Discovery Museum with hands-on science fun!
- We continued with our Tobin School blog on our updated website, offering insights on curriculum topics, teaching resilience to young children, preparing for successful drop offs, and raising kind kids.
- Professional Development was again a huge effort at Tobin. This year’s faculty each participated in well over the required 20 hours of professional education on a wide variety of topics to keep us at the top of our game. Read more here.
- With our continued commitment to supporting children in their social emotional development, Tobin was named a Kindness Certified School for the 2nd year in a row with the Great Kindness Challenge 2017. For the 4th year, we also celebrated our Choose to Be Nice week focusing on being a kind community.
- We expanded our outdoor play spaces with the addition of our new Loose Parts Nature area, our Music Wall, our super fun Ball Runs, lots of new trikes, and an outdoor easel.
- We held our 2nd annual Family Fun Night at Tobin this winter and it was even more fun for the whole family!
- We again made community service a school-wide mission. In the Fall we collected 44(!!!) bags of clothes and shoes for Cradles to Crayons, held our hugely successful Family Volunteer Fair in November supporting 11 different organizations, gathered 72 gifts to make some needy children’s holiday a bright one, raised funds to support elephants housed at a refuge here in the U.S, and participated for the 4th year straight in the Walk to End Homelessness event to support Family Promise Metrowest. In addition, our faculty spent a half day volunteering at the Natick Service Council.
- Lots of great memories from a very successful school year