Classroom Login


Home / Programs / Aftercare

Extended Day Program

Aftercare: Unstructured Playtime and the Great Outdoors

At Great Beginnings, we offer an extended care option for your child from 3:15 – 5:30. And, aftercare is fun. It should be fun. After a beautiful, enriching day at Montessori school, we have a complementary philosophy for our after school program. We believe that children should have unstructured playtime and be outside during the hours between school and an extended pick-up. And they do, too!

Why? For children, time spent in nature and discovering the world around them has numerous benefits contributing to healthy childhood development. Children at Great Beginnings spend significant time in outdoor settings, where they can play, learn, explore and experience the natural world around them. Great Beginnings’ believes that time in nature is vital to the social, emotional, cognitive and physical development of children. Most experts agree that giving children regular contact with all that nature can provide is an essential part of growing up (even when it is cold).

Regular contact with nature has shown to have many positive effects on children’s intellectual, as well as physical development. Having unstructured playtime outside also develops a sense of creativity and adventure. For many children, being able to connect with nature helps provide a sense of calm and of being part of a larger community. These feelings can lead to lower levels of stress (especially in children) and fewer behavior challenges. Spending free time outside also appears to be connected to an increase in children’s critical thinking and in their ability to handle and resolve problems.

3:15 - Put on inside shoes, wash hands, snack
3:45 - Special Activity / Outdoor Time
4:30 - Dismissal from Special Class/ Outdoor Time to indoor Free Choice
5:00 - Story Time at Rug (Pick-Up Begins)
5:20 - Transition to home, put on outside shoes & clothes
5:30 - School Closed

Aftercare is limited to 12 children per day, 8 preschoolers and 4 toddlers. Pre-registration is requested. Enrollment is on a first-come, first-served basis. For drop-ins, please check availability and sign-up on the Aftercare calendar outside the school office.

Our Aftercare Director has created a great program with our GBMS kids. In addition to their Special Activity/ Outdoor Time, the children create nature rubbings, play on obstacle courses, paint murals, and enjoy an interactive nature awareness program. The cost for Aftercare, Monday through Thursday, is only $10/per day with hours from 3:15 to 5:30 pm. There is no Aftercare on Friday.


Our aftercare teachers include indoor and outdoor movement and activities.


Creating art with nature.


Worms, worms and worms!