4 Year Old Program
Our teachers outline activities to maximize areas of interests in order to enhance the learning capabilities of each child. Our program uses developmentally appropriate methods and materials as a means for students to acquire and apply academic skills, gain social competencies, and to enjoy the learning process. One of our objectives is to fine-tune skills that children will need to adapt to the Kindergarten setting.
Language and Literacy Development
Children continually develop communication skills – speaking, listening, reading and writing. Teachers actively work to increase each child’s vocabulary and fluency with language, by encouraging children to talk about their experiences, describe their play, express ideas and feelings, and to participate in daily activities such as calendar time, flannel board use, storytelling an d dramatic play. The classroom environment is print-rich and offers the opportunity to develop familiarity with forms of alphabet letters, awareness of print, and letter forms in addition to communication skills. Children write and/or dictate stories and ideas regularly, using a combination of words and pictures to help them understand the purpose of writing and validate themselves as artists.
Children need time with a variety of materials to explore possibilities an d develop the skills necessary to express their ideas through art experiences. On a regular basis, children freely use crayons, pencils, and a variety of paints, clay, dough, scissors, and glue. They are encouraged to experiment with materials on hand, combining them in new ways as fundamental concepts and skills are developed. Time and space is set aside regularly for singing and movement games, chants, and creative dance with music. Children are encouraged to participate and respond to various musical rhythms related to movement, balance, strength, and flexibility.
History/Science and Technology
Children are naturally curious about the world, and are encouraged both to pose questions and to search for answers to those questions. Children observe, communicate about their observations, compare, and organize as they investigate, solve problems, and make decisions. Our curriculum includes the opportunity to investigate, describe, and compare characteristics that differentiate living things, humans, animals, plants, and living from non-living things.
Children explore mathematical concepts with a hands-on approach that uses concrete, manipulative activities in support of a solid foundation in mathematics, and lays the groundwork for symbolic understanding. Concepts of number, estimation, measurement, patterns, relationships, geometry, and spatial sense are explored.
Health / Physical Development
Fine motor development is supported through the diverse materials available in each classroom daily including a variety of small manipulates, pegboards, puzzles, lacing card, as well as materials for drawing, painting, modeling, and writing. Activities that support visual/perceptual skills offer foundations in physical development necessary for comfortable writing skills. Children are encouraged to participate in active play with a goal of developing self-confidence in movement. Children build body awareness, strength, and coordination through locomotion activities. Use of a variety of tools and materials to build grasp-and-release skills, including finger dexterity, are part of the daily life of the classroom. Consistent routines are followed regarding hand washing and health and safety rules. Children are encouraged to practice independence and self-help skills.
The four-year-old classroom is set up to allow for individual learning and exploration. Learning Centers such as math & manipulates, science, art and reading, are just some of the areas each child will have to choose from. Monthly themes are integrated with letters of the alphabet and various activities help create a well-rounded atmosphere for learning. A more academic approach with the right balance of play, offers our children first-rate preparations for Kindergarten.