PHILOSOPHY AND CURRICULUM
The International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Programme (PYP) at Kehoe-France Northshore aims to enhance the existing curriculum which focuses on the fundamentals of education and student development in PreK-3 through fourth grade. The PYP provides a curriculum framework, which promotes learning through inquiry. In preschool, which encompasses PreK-3, PreK-4 and Kindergarten, this will encourage students to learn through play, exploration and discovery. The PYP recognizes that each student is a unique learner who must develop his or her skills to think critically and work collaboratively to accomplish tasks in an increasingly global society. The PYP supports our belief in children becoming creative, confident thinkers.
The Learning Environment and Our Staff
Providing an aesthetically pleasing, safe and sanitary, indoor and outdoor learning environment for children continues to be an importance at the preschool level at Kehoe-France Northshore. Our indoor learning spaces are divided into well-defined interest areas that encourage distinctive types of play and promote creativity, imagination, cognitive, social and emotional development. These areas are flexible and are full of materials and manipulatives that promote fun, hands-on learning. Outdoors, the children have the opportunity to run, play, climb and interact on developmentally appropriate playground equipment.
In every classroom there is a lead teacher and at least one or more assistants. Our low student to teacher ratio allows for plenty of individualized attention and interaction. Our lead teachers are degreed and certified and work hard to ensure their classrooms serve as a learning community.
The Daily Curriculum
A consistent daily routine supports active learning and builds on children’s interests. Through active learning children construct knowledge in both small and large group meetings, choice time when children interact in play-based centers, snack and lunch times, read-alouds, outdoor play and rest time. Throughout all of these learning experiences, children are immersed in reading, writing, mathematics, social studies, science and technology. In language arts, students receive instruction that includes phonemic awareness, phonics and decoding skills. Literature and language rich activities ensure that all students develop the skills to become fluent readers, writers, listeners, speakers and thinkers. By the end of kindergarten, students understand small numbers, quantities and simple shapes in their everyday environment. They count, compare, describe, sort objects and develop a sense about properties and patterns. During the preschool years, the purpose of science is to nurture children’s habits of inquiry, critical thinking, creativity, and innovative problem solving, and to foster open mindedness, and the motivation to learn. It guides children’s natural curiosity into opportunities to observe, explore, and inquire about basic phenomena and materials in their world. A preschooler’s understanding of history and social sciences naturally derives from their expanding knowledge of the world and their place in it. Social Studies provides a foundation for the study of history, culture, geography, economics, civics and citizenship, ecology, and the global environment that begins in the primary grades and continues throughout life.
In alignment with the IB framework, children are exposed to music, Spanish language acquisition, STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics), physical education and health and the arts one to two times each week.