Chavitos! Nature School

Nature Inspired, Spanish Immersed
Ages 2-5
Grades K-3



Why us?

Meag Diamond is a Cedarsong certified Forest Kindergarten teacher. For 13 years she has taught in the public and private school environments in Washington and in Lagos, Nigeria.  Most recently she has spent six years at a local public Montessori school as a Lower Elementary Teacher (grades 1-3).  Meag holds her National Board Certification in Literacy and also possesses  a Montessori certification. When she saw her son's love for nature she started to think creatively about a solution that would get both of them into the woods together more often. Now she is happy to bring her newborn, Luciano,  into the forest with her as well. 

Jose Estrada is originally from Guatemala where he spent six years teaching physical education and coaching soccer, lacrosse and swimming. For four years he worked at Safe Passage where he worked with some of Guatemala's neediest children. It was here where he met Meag who was volunteering for a week. His passion is to incorporate play and recreation into education with an emphasis on exploring nature in our diverse community. Jose and his son Keats love to learn through cooking, dancing and taking care of the four family chickens.  

José Estrada es originario de Guatemala donde pasó seis años enseñando educación física y entrenador de fútbol, lacrosse y natación. Durante cuatro años trabajó en Camino Seguro, donde trabajó con algunos de los niños más necesitados de Guatemala. Fue aquí donde se cumple Meag que trabajaba como voluntaria para una semana. Su pasión es la de incorporar el juego y la recreación en la educación con énfasis en la exploración de la naturaleza en nuestra diversa comunidad. José y su hijo Keats les encanta aprender a través de la cocina, el baile y el cuidado de los cuatro pollos de la familia.
Melissa Jorgensen is a Washington native.  She grew up in Puyallup and
moved to the desert to study at Arizona State University where she studied elementary education.  During her time at ASU, she met her husband, Josh.

After graduation, they taught together at an inner-city school in Phoenix
in a community predominantly made up of East African refugees.  Having
spent time in Africa before, Melissa and Josh followed their hearts to Cape
Town, South Africa where Melissa studied African Studies and they both
trained for ultra marathons and triathlons on the slopes of Table Mountain.

The following year, Melissa and Josh headed to South Korea to teach
English and travel throughout Asia. In 2012, they put down roots in
Tacoma.  Melissa has worked as a nanny, tutor, homeschool teacher and a stay at home mama.  She is passionate about the outdoors and health and wellness and along with being a mama of two lively boys (Leif and Reinger) is an integrative wellness coach.  When she's not teaching, coaching and momming-- she can be found running the trails at Point Defiance, hiking with little ones strapped to her back or dreaming up travel plans.

Why Nature Immersion?

  • Develops physical, emotional and mental balance through an authentic connection with     the natural world
  • Fosters compassion and empathy for the earth and all its inhabitants 
  • Engages all your child's senses and increases their observation skills 
  • Increases problem solving skills
  • Allows for practice and application of social skills


Why Spanish Immersion?

  • Builds mental flexibility
  • Results in better attention
  • Develops ability to think and find solutions to problems
  • Generates higher test scores
  • Fosters better and more advanced reading skills
  • Results in greater confidence
  • Gives brains a boost
  • Provides greater opportunities for college and careers
  • Encourages a bigger view of the world
  • Allows for greater grasp of one’s first language—including a bigger, richer vocabulary


Immersion is defined as a method of foreign language instruction in which the regular preschool curriculum is taught through the medium of the second language, Spanish.

 Children incorporate new information into their lives as they are able to process it and comprehend it. The child's ability to accept and understand Spanish comes as they progress month after month.


Curriculum
As certified teachers we are well versed in the developmental benchmarks your child will need and are fluent in the Kindergarten common core standards. As a nature-based preschool, we do not follow a set curriculum, but rather we integrate these teachings through our discovery based and child-driven play. We use the Growing Up WILD curriculum as a guide for the preschool and the Coyote's Guide for the elementary school. 


Calendar

For the 2017-2018 school year we will start on September 11th. Here is our schedule of holiday and breaks:


We will be observing the following Holidays: We don’t offer make-up days for Holidays.

November 10th- Veterans Day- No school

November 22nd, 23rd, 24th Thanksgiving Holiday-No school

December 1st -February 2nd. Winter break 

February 5th – regular class schedule resumes.

February 19th- Presidents' Day- No school

March 26th- April 6th- Spring Break- No school

May 28th Memorial Day- No school

June 25th- July 9th- Summer break

Last day of School is August 24th.


Winter session Option:

For those who need a winter option we will have a mini Chavitos session from December 4th – February 2nd. With a two week break from 

December 18th and continuing January 2nd for the winter holiday. More information to come in October concerning the days and times. 


Clothing

Click here to find specific requirements. Unlike traditional indoor programs, your child will frequently be sorting through many layers of clothing on their way to and from the bathroom. The ability to know and regulate toileting is therefore a necessity. All students must be potty trained. Or you must be ok with them wearing a diaper for the time they are here without being changed.


Teacher to Student Ratio

Class sizes are small with a 1:4 ratio. The limit is 8 students per class.

Lunch/Snack
Due to allergies and food preferences parents will provide their child's favorite snacks and foods for the day.  Please don't pack any peanuts. Also, please send a labeled reusable water bottle. Students will have time to eat snack at 10:00 and 2:30.

Hours
Preschool: Monday through Friday 3 hours a day 8:30-11:30
Preschool: Monday, Wednesday, Friday 1:00-4:00
Elementary School: Tuesday, Thursday 1:00-4:00

Our location

We are not the house, we are the land next to it. 
801 S Madison St. Tacoma Wa