Over the course of the year we will investigate many things through open-ended semester long and even whole year, projects based on the children’s interests.
During these in-depth studies the children will build skills in math, science, literacy, social studies, and art. In developing these skills through hands-on activities, the children will learn to problem solve, cooperate, analyze, make observations, and draw conclusions as they test out their own theories. Material explorations of rich materials, like paint and clay, will allow the children to develop many skills of expression in addition to written and verbal communication. Incorporating many natural and recycled materials prompts many connections with nature and sparks the children’s engagement. Our curriculum is aligned with State of Michigan Grade Level Content Expectations and with the National Association for the Education of Young Children’s standards for developmentally appropriate practice. The Reggio Emilia philosophy of educating young children inspires our curriculum. By incorporating play and hands-on exploration opportunities the children are provided with meaningful learning experiences. In our multi-age class, children collaborate together and develop leadership skills. Building relationships is promoted in our long term investigations as children work together as members in common learning groups. We strive to develop self-regulation with positive guidance.
In a typical day, we will meet together to make plans for learning, eat a nutritious snack, explore activities in each content area, and develop higher level thinking skills through our investigations. We will come together as a whole group to share and reflect on our investigations. We will read together as a whole group and in small groups. Writing abounds throughout our day, as well as reading. Literacy skills are purported in conjunction with our investigations continuously. The children will also write in small groups daily in journals. Playing outside every day garners fresh air, exercise, and many opportunities to develop social skills.