Early Childhood Overview
Our Early Years program welcomes children between the ages of 2 and 5 years old. Our classes are taught by professionals trained in early childhood education. Pre-Nursery, Nursery and Pre-Kindergarten offer a full day program, from 7:30 am until 3:00pm. Half day is optional only in Pre-Nursery and Nursery.
Our days are filled not only with classroom instructional time, but also with special classes like: Physical education, Art, Music, Library and Occupational Therapy.
The program in Pre-Nursery, Nursery and Pre-Kindergarten is a multi-sensory, developmentally appropriate curriculum. It is based on the child’s need for freedom within limits. A carefully prepared environment guarantees exposure to a variety of materials and experience through which intellectual as well as physical and psychological abilities are developed. Along with the development of the child’s social skills, we help him/her discover the wonderful world of numbers, colors and letters, using materials and programs specially designed to cover the areas of pre-reading and pre-writing.
Student progress is reported to parents at the middle and the end of each grading period. In addition, parent conferences are requested once in the fall and once in the spring. Of course, conferences may be requested by either parent or teacher as need arises.
The ultimate goal of education is to promote the development of the child as a whole. The child learns that he/she is unique and can become an independent learner. The program provides a variety of opportunities for the child to develop emotionally, socially, physically, and intellectually to the best of his/her potential. The child’s present developmental stage must be considered in order to meet his/her needs.
The education process is oriented towards forming an individual who is a productive member of society. A balanced atmosphere of knowledge, promotion of a healthy self-esteem, and opportunities to practice and learn social responsibility are provided to begin building a sense of community. The development of a good citizen implies encouraging the value of working as a team and the ability to participate in a responsible way to better society. The child is motivated to work cooperatively in groups, to help formulate a plan, to be able to give and accept help, and to reflect critically on the groups’ achievements as well as his/her own.
Another goal of the program is to ensure cultural understanding so the child becomes intrinsically motivated to appreciate diverse values.
Lastly, a true understanding should be formed based on respect for self, others, and the preservation of life and the environment. The program provides activities that teach health topics as well as the conservation of our planet.
Here are some websites recommended by the early childhood team to discover.
Early Childhood Websites
SOCIAL – EMOTIONAL
The social-emotional program promotes activities and social interactions, which will contribute to the development of each child’s self-image and self-confidence. Each child is encouraged to practice self-control by accepting responsibility for his/her own actions, and respecting the rights of others. Each child learns to express feelings, concerns and frustrations verbally rather than physically. In addition, each student will develop a sense of fairness and understanding of right and wrong.
The child is engaged in activities, which promote independence as he/she learns to work with minimal assistance and interruptions. The process begins with each child being able to choose appropriate work, organizing its workspace, and working at an acceptable rate. The child learns to balance work and play to get the job done. The process ends when all work is put away neatly and properly, and the workspace is ready for another child or a different task. Each child is exposed to cooperative learning, group problem solving and critical thinking to complete a given task. The program fosters in each child a love for learning.
FINE MOTOR DEVELOPMENT
The activities in the fine motor area assist children in the development of small motor control and eye-hand coordination, which precedes the actual D’Nealian instruction. The prerequisites for proper handwriting include the manipulation of different tools and media so each child can develop his/her fine grasping and controlling movements.
Pre-Nursery and Nursery:
-Performs simple representational drawings.
-Understands that scribbles mean writing.
Pre-Kindergarten (In addition to the above)
-Draws for intended meaning.
-Develops use of right/left hand.
-Recognizes difference between print and illustrations.
Each student is introduced to math concepts through the use of various manipulatives. Manipulatives help the child link abstract symbols to concrete materials. Mathematics are integrated into other subject areas such as Science, Language Arts, and every day experiences. Fractions are taught through cooking experiences. Problem solving and logical reasoning are used every day as each student learns about patterns, graphing, addition, subtraction, geometry, and numeration. The child is able to connect his/her newly acquired knowledge to their everyday lives through the program’s global view of math.
The child is immersed in a balanced literacy program to develop both oral and written language skills. The Early Childhood Team uses a whole language approach with a strong emphasis on phonics. The child’s language development is inherent in all aspects of the classroom as well as the foundation of the child’s overall growth. The child will be able to orally communicate by using complete sentences. Hand in hand with oral development is the knowledge and meaning of print: stories are read aloud, books are made, home reading is stressed to develop independent readers, and above all, the love of books is fostered.
SENSORY MOTOR INTEGRATION
As part of CIC’s dedication to whole-child education, CIC employs the Sensory Motor Integration Program from Pre-nursery through to Grade One. This program helps children enhance visual, auditory, tactile, kinesthetic, and fine motor skills. It is a child-centered learning approach that uses simultaneous multi-sensory activities to promote appropriate muscular and brain development. The classes are provided by a licensed occupational therapist in a forty-five minute session. We have excellent facilities for this program. Private sessions for individual students can be arranged