|The Kindergarten program is designed to develop cognitive, social, emotional, and physical growth. It assists children in developing strong, positive feelings about themselves as individuals and as members of a school community in a nurturing environment where children are encouraged to be curious and creative. Children work in a variety of settings including whole class, small group, and one-to-one instruction with the teacher and an instructional assistant. Time is scheduled for independent explorations and study. Children begin to see themselves as competent learners as they progress through the year.
In reading and writing, a reasonable goal for kindergarten is to have all children beginning to read and write on their own name by the end of the kindergarten year. Children will experience repeated practice in working with letters and sounds to develop a good initial understanding of how language works. The basic principle underlying our written language, the alphabetic principle, is the understanding that the sounds we hear in words are represented by letters written from left to right.
The mathematics program is rich, varied, and relevant. Children learn mathematical concepts using manipulatives. Seasonal activities create an ongoing need, purpose, and excitement for mathematics. The children explore patterns and relationships, simple addition and subtraction, and simple geometry. Combining the recitation of the number sequence with the act of counting objects becomes the foundation for learning addition, subtraction, and place value in first grade.
Using a variety of materials, students are introduced to the beginning science skills of observing, sorting, predicting, comparing, and classifying. Units are centered on general themes. The children will have weekly hands-on experiences dealing with earth, physical, and life sciences.
Children learn how to relate to each other as family members, members of a school community, and citizens of their local community. They learn to work and play together and to respect their individual differences. The goal is to orient the child to the past and plant the seeds of knowledge that will grow in later years by introducing a variety of people and events.
The children learn to increase their awareness of self, others, and the world. They develop a sense of prayer and celebration. The class begins each day with a morning prayer and says grace before eating lunch. Parents are encouraged to share in the religious development of their children and to help build a foundation for their spiritual growth.
The goal is to develop an appreciation of art and artistic terms and techniques while encouraging children to express their creativity and individuality. For the kindergartner, art will take the form of doing: drawing, painting, cutting and pasting, and working with other materials. While art is doing, it is also seeing and thinking.