Chavitos Staff for 2018-2019
My name is Catherina Hernandez. I am originally from Russia. After I graduated from University with a Master’s degree in Public Relations I decided to immigrate to United States looking for adventures. Here I met my husband and became a stay-at-home mom.
When my son reached the preschool age I discovered forest schools. I absolutely loved its philosophy of allowing children to keep and develop a connection with nature, especially in todays world of technology. I witnessed how fulfilling it is to watch my own child while he was attending a forest schools. I also strongly believe in children's natural passion to learn and discover if given an opportunity to do so.
In summer 2018 I completed Cedarsong Forest School Teacher Training on Vashon island. and am a Cedarsong Certified teacher. In the fall I'm joining Chavitos Nature School as an assistant teacher.
Catherina teaches afternoons September-February.
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.
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.
We use the Honorable Harvest while teaching students how to engage with nature. From picking flowers, leaves or fruit we start to teach these concepts to the children. We believe that the earth takes care of us and we need to take care of it with the next seven generation in mind. While these guidelines have not been written down, or even consistently spoken of as a whole- they are reinforced in small acts of daily life. This is taken from the Native American traditions taught by Robin Wall Kimmerer in her book Braiding Sweetgrass.
- Know the ways of the ones who take care of you, so that you may take care of them.
- Introduce yourself. Be accountable as the one who comes asking for life.
- Ask permission before taking. Abide by the answer.
- Never take the first. Never take the last.
- Take only what you need.
- Take only that which is given.
- Never take more than half. Leave some for others.
- Harvest in a way that minimizes harm.
- Use it respectfully. Never waste what you have taken.
- Give thanks for what you have been given.
- Give a gift, in reciprocity for what you have taken.
- Sustain the ones who sustain you and the earth will last forever.
For the 2018-2019 school year we will start on September 10th. Here is our schedule of holiday and breaks:
We will be observing the following Holidays: We don’t offer make-up days for Holidays.
2018-2019 School year
Our first day of school is September 10th.
November 12th- Veterans Day- No school
November 21st, 22nd, 23rd Thanksgiving Holiday-No school
December 24th-January 4th Winter break
January 21st, MLK day- No school
February 18th- Presidents' Day- No school
April 1st- April 12th- Spring Break- No school
May 27th Memorial Day- No school
June 26th-July 6th Summer break
Last day of School is August 31st.
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 RatioClass sizes are small with a 1:4 ratio. The limit is 8 students per class.
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.
Preschool: Monday through Friday 8:30-11:30
Preschool: Monday, Friday 1:00-4:00
Elementary School: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday 1:00-4:00