Our curriculum is children driven and teachers framed. We use the High Scope curriculum as it projects accurately how the children learn. We are inspired by the Reggio Emilia Approach to teaching. Perhaps the most difficult lesson any parent or teacher must learn is to allow a child to live comfortably in their youthful world and to encourage them to discover and follow their self-chosen paths to knowledge and maturity. Our role is to accompany children on their journey, clearing the path to obstacles and offering encouragement and guidance, not surging to the forefront to lead the way.
The fundamental premise of the High Scope Curriculum is that children are active learners- learning best from activities they plan and carry out themselves.
- Teachers must understand how children mentally construct the world and how these mental constructs change the course of children’s development.
- Teaching must build upon, not direct or control, the thoughts and actions of children.
- Children must have daily opportunities to decide what they want to do.
- The child’s daily plan must provide the starting point for teaching.
- Certain key experiences are essential to children’s early intellectual growth.
The High Scope Curriculum involves 5 ingredients in Active Learning. Active Learning is a child’s direct experience with real objects. Active Learning occurs when all of the following ingredients are present:
- Materials for each child
- Manipulation of those materials
- Choice by the child of what to do with the materials
- Words chosen and used by the child
- Support by adults or peers that help the child think about his or her actions.
The foundation of learning in children is their action in play.
Key Experiences provide a useful framework that guides teachers and assistants in conducting the classroom program. Key Experiences help the teaching staff encourage and extend children self-chosen activities by providing developmentally appropriate learning experiences. The Key Experiences are important to the development of rational thought in children.
The goals of the High Scope Curriculum are to:
- Support and extend preschooler’s emerging skills
- Promote Active Learning
- Plan and carry out of the activities themselves
- Provide direct experience with real objects and application of logical thinking to experiences
- Establish and maintain a consistent daily routine (advance notice to children when routine changes).