OUR CURRICULLUM The pre-school curriculum is a blend of the Montessori Methods of Education and the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum Guidance of the national Curriculum of England and Wales. This will ensure that the child is given well rounded education that will help develop the unique personality of the child. THE MONTESSORI METHOD This is an approach to children’s early learning pioneered by Maria Montessori (1970 – 1952). She was an Italian medical doctor and also one of the most important early year’s educators of the twentieth century. While working with the disadvantaged children of working parents she approached their education as a scientist, finding our=t ways to help them to achieve their full potentials. The Montessori approach is an educational programme that is tailored to suit the child’s individual needs. The approach places great emphasis on the child’s learning by given the opportunity to learn at the right time and also to develop at his/her pace. Montessori believed that children develop in stages and each stage has its own unique qualities and characteristics. The Montessori Method has three key components; the child, the favourable environment and the teacher. She believed that children learn through their own spontaneous activity and they have a natural inquisitives and eagerness to learn. The role of the teacher is to provide a planned environment that will give the children the opportunity to develop skills and concepts. The Montessori Method makes use of differentiated materials to help build children’s skills. The materials are didactic and experimentation with these materials allows the children to discover and understand basic concepts themselves. The use of the materials involves exercises that would stimulate motor and sensory education as well as language. In addition, Montessori creates ideal environment full of opportunities for children to experiment and initiate their own education. Montessori identified particular “sensitive period” when children were keen and ready to learn new ideas. Much of the Montessori approach is focused on the use of the five senses with activities being carefully planned to maximize their use. At Peculiar Treasure we are focusing on first two areas of learning in the Montessori Method of Education. They are:
- Practical Life
PRACTICAL LIFE The activities in this area reflect the children’s need to model the behavior of their parents and their family life. They allow children to contribute towards the cultural and social life of the classroom, offering them the opportunity to feel a sense of belonging. The main aim of the practical life exercises is to make a link between the home and the classroom. This is done by representation tasks and activities with which the children are already familiar from their environment such as pouring, dusting, getting dressed and sweeping the floor. The practical life exercises are divided into four groups:
- Exercise for refinement of movement and preliminary skills
- Exercise for care of the environment
- Exercise for care of self
- Exercise for social skills
The development encouraged by practical activities is:
- Fine motor control
- Sense of order
- Ability to look after oneself
An added purpose of practical life is that the real tasks involved the child’s hand and mind working together which greatly increases the capacity to concentrate and this skill prepares the child for latter intellectual work. SENSORIAL The main purpose of these activities is to help the child organize and classify the impression of the environment gathered during the earliest stages of their life. Sensorial materials offer systematic refinement of the five senses as well as the child’s stereognostic and kinesthetic sense. Sensorial activities help children to sort, match and compare objects by shape, size, touch, taste and sound. These early sensorial impressions boost children’s power of observation and discrimination and Boolean their vocabulary and contribute to their understanding of formal education concepts. By carefully teaching the children how to use materials through creative manipulation and leading them gradually they will emerged as competent readers and writers. THE FOUNDATION STAGE CURRICULUM GUIDANCE The Foundation Stage Curriculum has been created for children from birth to five years. The Foundation Stage Curriculum has four distinct but compulsory themes. These are
- The Unique Child
- Positive relationship
- Enabling environment
- Learning and development
Every child deserves the best possible start in life and support to fulfill their child’s experience in the early years has a major impact on the future life secure, safe and happy childhood is important in its own right and provides that foundation for children to make the most of their life abilities and talents as they grow up. Therefore when parents choose an early years service they want to know that the setting will keep their children safe and help them thrive. The early years Foundation Stage Curriculum is frame work that provides that assurance. The Foundation Stage Curriculum has six (6) areas of learning and development. Each area has aspects with learning goals. These early leaning goals are statement of what most children should accomplish in areas of learning by the end of the foundation stage. AREAS OF LEARNING PERSONAL, SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL DEVELOPMENT
- Concentration and perseverance
- Helps children to socialize and co-operate with each other.
- Children are able to think about others and adapt their behavior accordingly
- Develop sense of self and awareness of other needs, beliefs and culture
COMMUNICATION, LANGUAGE AND LITERACY
- Help to use language as way of socializing and expressing their need such as interacting speaking, listening and vocabulary
- Helps to recognize that language is linked to cognitive development such as talk, using language for imagination
- Develop awareness of sounds and letters the help children to both read and write later on name and sounds of the alphabet letters, rhymes
- Motivate children to read through listening to stories, how to handle books and read word.
- Children learn to communicate through marks and then develop ability to write whole words.
- Children learn to produce fluent handwriting.
PROBLEM SOLVING, REASONING AND NUMERACY
- Help children to recognize number
- Help children to solve problems in mathematics
- Children learn about concept of shape, space and measurements.