Policies & Procedures
Illness & Absences
If your child is sick with fever, flu, vomiting, diarrhea or something else terrible that you wouldn’t want to share, please don’t send him/her to school. The State of Oregon Health Department requires them to stay home for 24-48 hours before returning to school. In the case of a scheduled absences or vacations, please notify us in advance. Tuition will not be reduced for illness or unscheduled absence.
Both of our schools use the Portland Public Schools’ policy for closures as a general guideline. However, there are some differences so please see the calendar for additional information about scheduled school closures. You are also welcome to contact us to verify if the school is opening late or closed.
Since this is the first school experience for most children, we understand the desire to stay and see how things are going and the difficulty you may have leaving your child for the first time in another teacher’s care. Separation may be difficult, but we have to remember that the birth of our child was the first step on their path of individuality. Each day they grow more and more independent, incarnating into their own being. That being said, transition is a gray area. Please take cues from your child about when to stay or go while holding the idea that this is their time. Please feel free to drop in at anytime, stay a little longer in the morning or pick up a little earlier.
There are various ways in which you can be involved. Field trips, festivals, family evenings, painting day or other special craft or festival days are all wonderful ways to contribute. And, as other things arise as the year progresses, we’ll be sure to let you know.
Questions & Concerns
Since our children are always around us and require our whole attention, it is better to bring questions or concerns when the children are not present, ideally. Please speak directly to one of the site supervisors if there is something weighing on your heart. We do much better with direct speech. It is very difficult for us to give you the attention you need first thing in the morning. Emailing or calling on the phone works best.
Every other month we provide a forum for discussion on important home life, parenting and societal issues. We also would like for us all to get to know each other better. This is a wonderful opportunity for us to come together to discuss our children’s well being, how we can be better parents and a place to share challenges. We are each creating our family vessel. Let’s help each other in this endeavor. Please see our calendar for upcoming events.
Within our Tabor Tots community we take many measures to prevent and redirect behavioral challenges. Our own professional and inner work brings a strong understanding of childhood development and helps build realistic expectations for our children.
In our training as teachers we know that we must model ideal behavior through interactions with both children, and their parents. We must be able to observe truthfully (without judgment) what creates harmony and what creates discord. Within the rhythm of the school, we strive to create individual connections with each child and to react according to their individual needs.
Our classroom environment also effects behavior, therefore careful consideration has been given to the physical spacing of works, tools, activities and flow of our classrooms. Lastly, the rhythm of the day is designed to create harmony for our children, offering opportunities for calm contemplation and vigorous physical activity.
Behaviors not tolerated:
- aggressive behavior:bullying
- threatening/disrespectful language
- inside voices
- walking feet indoors
- cleanliness/ care for toys
- sharing/taking turns
- wearing slippers inside
- bathroom privacy (one child at a time using bathroom , except for hand washing)
- proper clothing for weather
- table manners/safe eating behaviors
Children are supervised at all times. Redirection is used to guide children from behaviors not tolerated towards behaviors we wish to encourage.
Approaches to discipline for Tabor Tots community
I. Gesture - Without calling/speaking, we indicate with a gesture what the children are to do (i.e. sit down, quiet, etc.)
II. Royal “we” - We speak in “we” rather than individualizing a child. This reinforces participation while holding each child in high regard. Ex: “Now we are cleaning our room”, “We are getting ready for outside”, and “We all wash our hands”.
III. Privileged “may” - Eliminating a “yes/no” answer, we accentuate the positive community participation by directing them. Ex: “You may close the door”, “you may help set the table” and “you may help snap the beans”.
IV. Pictorial Language - Children live in pictures. When we make a request with creative language children respond with delight and enjoyment. Ex: To encourage a child to help put train bits in their home place, we might say, “Friend, our tabor tot train has fallen off its track. Let’s help it back on the rails before it loses our lunch car and all of our food!”
V. Even Objective Tone - When our voice wavers and escalates to urgency, we lose ourselves (our consciousness) and the child looses respect for us. Discipline is for the benefit of the child and must be done with love and respect.
VI. Save “NO” for harming self and others - We see the need to use this word in dire circumstances in order to stop the physical/mental harm.
VII. When we use “NO”, then what comes next? We ask ourselves what are the underlying needs of the child? Is there a more appropriate way for them to get that need met? Ex: When a child has pinched another, we create a safe place for both. We place ourselves between the two, we set example of empathy by caring for the pinched friend, thus allowing time for empathy to grow within the other. We then encourage them to work together on an activity.
VIII. Create healing relative to the deed - Ex: Have the child who hurt another help with the healing of the hurt child.
IX. Objectify the deed - Seeing the inherent good in each child, we separate their behavior from who they are. This prevents the child from seeing him/herself as “bad”. Ex: We see those fingers are wanting to pinch things, let’s place a squeezy ball into them and squeeze it.
X. Use healing stories - Stories will be told throughout the year that provide examples and models of how to treat one another with kindness and gentleness. These moral lessons told through stories sink deeply into the child’s consciousness, and provide a way for them to check their behavior.