Here are some answers to our most frequently asked questions!
What is your curriculum?
We teach age appropriate content in all the learning domains: literacy, math, science, cognitive (the mental skills of creating, evaluating, analyzing, applying, understanding and remembering), social-emotional, physical and creative.
Our approach to teaching is:
Integrative i.e. the natural way children learn. There are long blocks of time to bring naturally related subjects together. Ex. math and science concepts naturally occur in block building. Language, math skills, art concepts are naturally related learning occurring while working puzzles. Learning across the domains in connected, not segmented into separate subject areas.
active vs. passive Children engage in hands on exploration of real objects rather than hearing teachers lecture.
providing meaningful and engaging activities for children. Learning goals are age and individually appropriate so that time is spent on what they can learn efficiently and effectively this year.
promoring a positive attitude about learning and a confidence in themselves as successful learners.
encouraging social-emotional skils with the goal of learning cooperation, empathy, curiosity, creativity, confidence, independence, initiative, and persistence.
listening closely to children ready to extend their thinking with appropraite questions and comments.
Do children play outdoors in cold weather?
The Irish say, "There's no such thing as bad weather - only inappropriate clothing." Unless the weather is dangerously cold, we dress for comfort and venture out. We may stay out for a shorter time than usual, but fresh air and wide open spaces, safe yet challenging equipment, plant and animal life to observe and care for, opportunities to work together with friends - all beckon us outdoors.
How do you incorporate Christian teachings in class?
Each week we tell a Bible story that is age appropriate. Bible phrases (thoughts from actual Bible verses that are understandable to 3 and 4-year olds) are woven in throughout our day. Example: While looking at seed pods gathered outdoors, a Bible is open to Genesis 1:11 and the teacher could point out "God made plants with seeds. This is how we can keep on growing more plants." At snack time, we pause to allow interested children to thank God for our food. At Christmas, we celebrate the birth of Jesus through our Las Posadas pageant. This is a Mexican tradition portraying the search for lodging by Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem before Jesus was born.
How do you prepare children for kindergarten?
Much more than knowing counting, numerals, alphabet letters and sounds, we strive to have children develop mutual trust and respect for adults and peers by establishing a caring classroom environment; to understand the perspective of others; to negotiate for their desires rather than hit or grab; to think critically, reason and solve problems; to portray their feelings and ideas through pretend play, music, art, and construction; to acquire basic fine and gross motor skills, and to maintain their innate sense of wonder and awe for the natural and physical world.