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Two Dried Leaves

Our Curriculum

Our Owls children come to school filled with questions, theories and curiosity. As their concentration expands and interests are widening, they are ready to tackle a full curriculum of learning activities balanced with artistic expression, scientific exploration and lots of physical activity. Free play is still of utmost importance at this age and often questions from learning centers are re-visited during that important time. Core academics are focused on in more depth and children work on language development, reading and writing, mathematical concepts as well as the visual and performing arts. 

Our Curriculum is a GUIDE, it is not written in stone.  It is a theme-based framework with suggested activities.  Not all activities in a day or week will be implemented because while we have a curriculum framework, we also support an emergent curriculum. What does that mean?  Imagine if our theme of the month was "Things that Grow" and our weekly theme was "Growing in the Garden" and we were planting some vegetables together and a child noticed a spider... they were scared at first but then we all started to examine the spider. One child suggested we get magnifying glasses, so that child went and got some and shared them with their friends.  We all started examining the spider, and the educator started to ask questions such as "How many legs can we see?"  "I wonder how it eats?".....  The children followed the spider to its web and discovered a fly in it.  This led to a discussion about what spiders eat, how do they spin a spider web?  The children started to pretend that some are spiders and some are flies, we decided we needed to make a giant web out of string to catch our food.  Everybody engineered the web together, figured out the best materials, questioned how will the fly stick to it?...We discarded what was written in the curriculum for that day because we embraced the children's interests, and wove our learning into it.  

So there you have it, an example of a child-centered, emergent curriculum in action!  Early learning is not a linear process.  We take the time to LISTEN to the children, EXPAND on their natural interests and INTRODUCE concepts and opportunities to learn in a meaningful way.

We use the award-winning Jolly Phonics Program to help children learn to read.

Sample weekly curriculum GUIDE

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Most of our learning is presented through music or provocations.  The teachers create areas and vignettes of the classroom into set up invitations to learn concepts from our curriculum.  The provocation may change and evolve along with the interests of the class.  Through our morning and afternoon circle times, children will be introduced to a wide array of FUN engaging learning!  Through singing our days of the week and months of the year songs, children are introduced to the calendar, sequencing, and mathematics, through singing our jolly phonics songs while doing the action,  and then later going to the writing center and tracing the letter into a tray of salt, our learning opportunities surround them and allow children to engage in the learning that they are interested in and ready for!  Each child develops at a different pace. Forcing children to learn through flashcards, worksheets, and rote memorization at a young age can damage their future relationship with learning, and stunt their curiosity and natural inquisitiveness to learn when they are ready.  For the children that are interested in letters, reading, and mathematics, we celebrate and encourage children's desire to learn through presenting meaningful exploratory activities based on their interests.  

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What would this curriculum look like in action? Here is an example of how they would find their school set up on Monday morning. A full transformation to support the theme, learning goals, and activities presented in that week's curriculum.  SO FUN!  Such engaged experiential learning, opportunities for exploration, imagination and rich hands on learning!

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