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Early Childhood Class


The Early Learning Center Program serves children in the Early Childhood Class through Kindergarten. The program is founded on premise that young children should be taught in developmentally appropriate ways through a variety of experiences and methods. Young children learn best through play, exploration, and social interaction. Young children possess a natural curiosity about the world around them and in turn, this curiosity invites learning. During these early years, the level of comprehension and mastery is wide-ranged.
The Early Childhood Class is an introduction to an organized school day with an opportunity to explore, both through guided instruction with the classroom teacher and through free play. Circle time and other instructional times with the teachers are devoted to a variety of interactive discussions, rhythmical activities, poems, finger plays, music, and explorations of topics in math, science, and social studies. Free play time provides a child with the opportunity to develop academic and social skills through a wide variety of choices utilizing math manipulatives, art materials, building centers, and home centers. The EC student should be able to:
      •listen for a short period
      •participate in exploration of manipulatives
      •follow one and two step directions
      •show enjoyment and curiosity about the topics being discussed
      •develop an ability to work in a group

Language Arts


Language development is one of the most important aspects of the Early Learning program. Language development is integrated in all activities throughout the day. The focus is on assisting the child in developing skills to meet the following goals:
      •daily opportunities to speak one-on-one with the teacher and in a group setting
      •development of an interest in books and reading
      •recognition [by the end of the year] his/her own name
      •identify colors and numbers
      •memorize songs, poems, stories and rhymes
      •familiarity with: rhyming, left/right, speaking in complete sentences, learning to describe objects, recognize the connection between written and spoken words

Math


Mathematical concepts are introduced at the Early Childhood level. These same concepts will be repeated at levels beyond Early Childhood to achieve mastery. The goal of math is to tap into and develop a child’s curiosity about numbers. Concepts introduced at the Early Learning level are:
      •directional words such as: up/down, around back/front, beside behind, over/under, in/out, in front of, on top of, to the side, underneath, right/left
      •first and last place
      •small, medium, large
      •geometric shapes: circle, oval, square, triangle, rectangle, diamond
      •awareness of time with regard to yesterday, today, tomorrow
      •rote counting from 0 – 10
      •one-to-one correspondence for 0 – 5
      •more than, less than, equal to
      •sets, sorting, and classifying

Science


The show and tell time as well as circle time centers around science and social studies concepts. Science topics may include, but are not limited to:
BearsFire PreventionPlantsWater
Body PartsFishRocks/MineralsWeather
ButterfliesMagnetsPetsTrees
Farm animalsNight sky/spaceSeasonsZoo animals

Social Studies


The show and tell time as well as circle time centers around science and social studies concepts.

Social Studies topics may include, but are not limited to:
      •activities and topics associated with seasons and holidays of the year
      •all about me [self]
      •America, symbols of the USA
      •days of the week, months of the year
      •manners
      •safety
      •school environment

Specials


Students in the Early Childhood class have Special Teachers for Library, Music, and Physical Education.
Art for the EC student is an introduction to art materials with an emphasis on process rather than product. Classroom teachers offer opportunities for hands-on art exploration through a variety of art media as a way to reinforce and enhance units of study.

Prekindergarten

The Prekindergarten program builds on a child’s existing concepts about the world around him.  PK class time is divided between free exploration [utilizing centers with math manipulatives, art activities, for developing fine motor skills, puzzles, building materials and home activities] and direct interactive instruction, which may be one-on-one, in small groups, or in the large group.

The PK student should be able to:

  • sit still and listen to a story, poem, or class discussion
  • participate in exploration of manipulatives
  • follow one and two step directions
  • show enjoyment and curiosity about the topics being discussed
  • develop an ability to work in a group
  • develop and communicate thoughts and ideas about topics of conversation
  • use materials responsibly

Language Arts


The PK classroom and curriculum are language rich.  Language development is integrated in all activities throughout the day and assessed on an ongoing basis.  The focus is on assisting a child in developing skills to meet the following goals:

  • daily opportunities to speak one-on-one with the teacher and in a group setting such as daily sharing time, small presentations to parents and other students
  • recognition and utilization of the alphabet in upper and lower case letters
  • recognition his/her own name classmates’ names, color and number names, and days of the week
  • memorize songs, poems, stories, nursery rhymes and rhymes
  • drawing complete pictures
  • sequencing of 3 – 5 pictures
  • left to right progression
  • familiarity with opposites
  • speaking in complete sentences
  • recognizing the connection between the written and spoken word

Math


Mathematical concepts are introduced at the Prekindergarten level.  These same concepts will be repeated at levels beyond Prekindergarten to achieve mastery.  The goal of math is to tap into and develop a child’s curiosity about numbers.  Concepts introduced at the Prekindergarten level are:

  • understanding positional words
  • understanding ordinal numbers 1 - 10
  • ordering small, medium, large
  • geometric shapes: circle, oval, square, triangle, rectangle, diamond
  • recognition of patterns
  • rote counting from 0 – 50
  • one-to-one correspondence for 0 – 10
  • more than, less than, equal to
  • sets, sorting, and classifying using one attribute at a time
  • estimation, calculating by counting on

Science


The daily show and tell time as well as circle time centers around science and social studies concepts.  Scientific skills are introduced through hands-on experiments.  Guests are invited to speak to the class to enrich science units and middle school students provide help with experiments throughout the year.  Field trips may be added when appropriate and available to enrich science exploration.

Science topics may include, but are not limited to:

BirdsFive sensesPlantsZoo animals
Earth awarenessHealth/nutritionPrimary/secondary colors
Endangered animalsInsectsSpiders
Farm animalsOceanWater

Social Studies


The daily show and tell time as well as circle time centers around science and social studies concepts.  Social studies topics are introduced in units and reinforced with daily classroom activities related to the topics.  Parents, community guests, and older students are invited to visit the classroom to enrich units of study.  Units at this level are designed to further the concept that a child is part of and a contributing member of a family and the larger community.

Social Studies topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • activities and topics associated with family, both immediate and extended
  • address and phone number
  • community helpers
  • days of the week, months of the year
  • Georgia awareness and symbols, including Chief McIntosh and the McIntosh Reserve
  • holiday traditions
  • manners
  • recycling
  • safety
  • our school
  • travel – land, air, water


Specials


Students in Prekindergarten have Special Teachers for Library, Music, and Physical Education.

Art for the PK student is an introduction to art materials with an emphasis on process rather than product.  Classroom teachers offer opportunities for hands-on art exploration through a variety of art media as a way to reinforce and enhance units of study.



Kindergarten


The Kindergarten program is grounded in the premise that children learn best through a variety of instructional and experiential methods. Kindergarten is the bridge between preschool and the more formal program of the elementary years. Material is introduced for review and mastery based on preschool experiences and the groundwork is laid on which the lower school years will build. The kindergarten student is taught, in both large and small groups, through direct instruction by the classroom teacher. Individual instruction is also given when warranted. Additionally, the kindergarten student works in centers that offer a variety of math, art, language, fine and gross motor activities. This is a year in which a child needs to explore as well as develop a need to know. It is a year in which a child learns significantly through play as well as through formal instruction.

The Kindergarten student should be able to:

  • listen to a story, poem, or class discussion, without talking
  • participate in exploration of manipulatives
  • follow one and two step directions
  • show enjoyment and curiosity about the topics being discussed
  • develop an ability to work in a group
  • develop and communicate thoughts and ideas about topics of conversation
  • use materials responsibly
  • understand the need to take turns listening and talking
  • begin to correlate concepts to the real world

Language Arts


The Kindergarten classroom and curriculum form the basis for formal language instruction and mechanics. Language development is integrated in all activities throughout the day and assessed on an ongoing basis. A wide range of skills is encompassed under the language arts heading, all of which reflect the kindergarten student’s emerging need for and usage of communication skills. The skills covered may be categorized as follows:
  • Listening skills
    • listen and respond
    • listen with comprehension, and for details
    • listen and follow directions
  • Communication skills
    • speak distinctly and in complete sentences
    • speak to a small group and/or perform for an audience
    • verbally participate in songs, poems, finger play, and dramatic play
  • Fine motor skills
    • determine handedness and use a proper pencil grip
    • color, cut, glue neatly
    • draw simple pictures
    • tie, button, zip
    • write upper/lower case letters and numbers with D’Nealian style formation
    • put puzzles together
    • build with construction materials
  • Writing skills
    • write first and last name properly
    • write three and four letter words
    • copy a short sentence from the board
    • begin to write simple, creative stories independently
  • Pre-reading skills
    • rhyming words
    • naming opposites
    • left to right progression
    • understand sequencing
    • recognize beginning, medial and ending sounds
    • identify and distinguish between upper/lower case letters
    • know consonant sounds
    • know long and short vowel sounds
  • Emergent reading skills
    • read color and number words
    • understand punctuation
    • understand pronoun referents [I, we, it]
    • categorize
    • draw conclusions
    • note details
    • make inferences
    • expand vocabulary
    • read and comprehend simple stories, if ready
Kindergarten uses the Open Court Collections for Young Scholars series as a basal series for teaching reading. In kindergarten, the series develops print and phonemic awareness, acquaints the child with how the alphabet works, presents critical strategies, and builds on story structure. Classroom teachers use little books, pocket chart games, big books, first-step stories, posters, songs, and games as instructional tools.

Math


Mathematical concepts at the Kindergarten level are introduced to form a foundation for building on specific mathematic operations. Many of the concepts introduced in EC and PK are mastered in the Kindergarten year and a child begins to make connections between written problems and conceptual thinking. Manipulatives are utilized to provide concrete reinforcement of abstract concepts. A specific goal of math at this level is to develop a correlation between real world experiences and math on a page. The kindergarten level of math focuses on these skills and concepts:
  • ordinal position to 10
  • identify solid, plane, and geometric shapes
  • recognition number words to ten
  • identify, copy and extend patterns
  • rote counting to 100 by ones, fives, tens
  • count, order, and write numbers to 100
  • one-to-one correspondence
  • more than, fewer, equal to
  • sets, sorting, and classifying using two-three attributes at a time
  • identify equal parts, one half , one third, one fourth, and one whole
  • tell time to the hour and half hour
  • problem solving by: logical reasoning, using patterns, “acting out”, making graphs, estimating, checking
  • identify and know the value of a penny, nickel, dime, and quarter
  • measure length and distance using standard and nonstandard measures
  • estimate length, width, capacity
  • find sums to 6 and differences from 6 using objects and money
  • calculation by counting one more or subtracting one more
  • write number sentences for a picture or situation
  • introduction to calculators
  • calendar skills [days of the week, months of the year, temperature, place value for ones and tens]

Science


The kindergarten science program is correlated with the letter of the week employed in language arts. Timely topics of interest to the students and perhaps highlighted in publications such as Time for Kids or Weekly Reader may also be explored. Students are presented with the scientific concepts: observe, classify, compare, contrast, describe and hypothesize to reach conclusions through hands-on experimentation.

Social Studies


Social studies activities in Kindergarten reflect a focus on the letter of the week concept, exploring topics that may be associated with the letter of the week, i.e., A-America, astronauts. Kindergarten students discuss a wide range of topics, occupations, participate in holiday activities, study maps, and practice their skills working with each other.

Specials


Students in Kindergarten have Special Teachers for Art, French, Library, Music, and Physical Education.


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