A consistent routine enables children at Community to navigate the social atmosphere of the classroom. Even before school starts, Community teachers begin to establish trust with each child. Children are given a chance to let teachers see their rooms and other special places when their teachers come for a home visit just days before the school year begins.
In Community's warm, supportive environment, children learn how to:
develop a sense of self and independence
be good listeners, express their feelings and cooperate
empathize for others
share and resolve conflicts
Using manipulatives for counting and working with pencils, markers, scissors and hole punchers is more than just fun! All of these activities, along with kneading clay, piecing together puzzles and building promote hand-eye coordination and small muscle development that will, one day, help them with skills like handwriting.
Gross motor skills are naturally developed through routine outdoor play. Each day, children spend a half-hour on Community's large playground climbing, swinging, running, rolling and sliding. Gross motor development also occurs inside the classroom where teachers provide a variety of activities that involve using a balance beam, dancing to music and playing bean bag games .
Curricular themes are based on the interests of our students and encourage critical thinking, questioning, reasoning and problem solving. Children are inspired to ask questions, seek answers and discuss their findings.
Community offers a print-rich environment that expands a child's emergent literacy skills. Children are asked to predict before and during shared readings that relate directly to the curricular theme, self-select books of interest from the classroom library and participate in dramatic re-enactments of texts.
Children at Community are also exposed to pre-writing skills. They have the opportunity to be a creative story-teller and dictate a story to a teacher, illustrate a story they have dictated and participate in formulating a class letter to a location they have visited on one of their numerous field trips.
Early math concepts are tied into all of the curricular themes that the children study throughout the year. These include sequencing, counting in one to one correspondence, patterning, estimating, comparing and graphing.