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PreKindergarten


Our PreK is a full-day program that enables preschoolers to enjoy developmentally appropriate activities while mastering knowledge and skills needed for success in kindergarten. With a classroom designed especially for them, PreK girls enjoy a separate entrance, large low windows and outdoor grassy areas for water and sand play. The environment encourages the girls to engage in imaginative play, alone and with others. Decisions about curriculum, routines and schedules reflect an understanding of how young children learn and grow. Integrated themes are selected to introduce ideas and permit exploration of the girls' own interests. 


The PreK playground provides an enclosed space for active play such as riding bikes, climbing, running, gardening, digging in the sand, swinging and games. The area also serves as an outdoor classroom where the girls are able to explore and learn about the natural world, grow plants, make observations and conduct science experiments.

PreK WEEKLY DIGEST

Teaching Approach

A key aspect of successful learning during the early years is the pacing of experiences to support each child's rate of development. The small size of our PreK class, combined with the presence of two consistent teachers, enables close observation of the girls' skills, questions and readiness for new concepts. 

The PreK staff serve as facilitators of learning. After setting the stage for the day, adults permit the girls to make their own discoveries and act on their own ideas. Teachers work with individual students, make observations, offer support as needed and redirect behavior when necessary. Regular consultation with parents keeps mothers and fathers aware of growth that is occurring.

Daily Schedule

Throughout the day emphasis is placed on social, emotional, cognitive and physical growth. The schedule includes long blocks of uninterrupted time for play, individually and with others. Daily directed learning experiences offer practice in focusing attention, following directions, sequencing and completing tasks independently and as part of a group of children. Circle time activities, snack, lunch and outdoor play encourage the development of relationships with teachers and peers. 

Daily routines and activities support the development of relationships with teachers and classmates. Self-esteem grows through the process of encountering and mastering new skills. Girls come to regard themselves as capable as they succeed with hands-on experiences. At the same time, self-control is learned by making choices and discovering ways to govern their own behavior and to get along with the other members of the class.

Curriculum

LANGUAGE ARTS

Emerging literacy stands at the center of the PreK program, with the girls guided to see the connections between speaking, reading, and writing. Daily activities with language, books, poetry, rhymes and listening skills help foster a love of stories and reading. Alphabet-related activities foster familiarity with letters and sounds. The girls begin to identify simple words in the print rich environment. 

MATH

Concepts and skills are introduced by using counting and numbers in both play and real-life situations, such as quantities, times, dates and age. Patterns, designs, graphing, and problem solving activities with concrete objects build knowledge of mathematical concepts and language. The girls begin to recognize and write numbers, to count and to recognize shapes.

SCIENCE

With an emphasis on the natural world, the girls engage in weekly activities that encourage exploration of the outdoors, observation of plants, trees, birds and animals, documentation of changes in weather, and discoveries about the properties of water, sand and soil.

SOCIAL STUDIES

The girls have opportunities to learn about themselves, their families, the AIS community and the neighborhood around the school. The girls visit a farm, garden and nature center and meet various community helpers in the classroom setting. Library, physical education and music experiences are part of the daily schedule.

SPANISH

The Spanish program at this age level is based on listening comprehension and oral production, book reading, songs, rhymes, movement, and echoing of words. Throughout the year, the girls learn to express feelings and emotions, and to understand and interpret spoken Spanish on a variety of topics: basic greetings, polite words, colors, basic numbers, days, months, basic clothing, basic body parts, animals and foods. Students also experience learning about holidays celebrated in the United States and Spanish-speaking countries. The goal of the program is to be aware of the existence of a different language and the diversity in our community.

LIBRARY

With an emphasis on fostering listening comprehension and a love of books, the PreK girls attend library once a week.  During this time they hear stories and have an opportunity to check out books for reading at home.

PHYSICAL EDUCATION

Developmental skills such as running, skipping, hopping, jumping, and eye-hand coordination are practiced within the context of games during the physical education class.  This class, which meets three times a week, provides girls with an opportunity to strengthen their gross motor skills and take healthy risks by attempting new skills in a fun, non-threatening environment.

MUSIC

The Lower School music program is based on the philosophy and musical methods of Hungarian composer Zoltan Kodaly. This method espouses introducing skills based on the developmental levels of a child’s ability. In the PreK curriculum, folksongs, listening, singing and movement are used to teach rhythm, tone and eventually notation.

Lower School Involvement

Our PreK girls participate fully in the life of the Lower School, attending assemblies, playing with older students and enjoying school-wide celebrations. Administrative staff greet the girls each morning as they arrive for school. Fourth grade students visit the classroom to read stories, work on special projects and present dramatizations. The girls also join in a variety of Lower School community service activities.

Parental Involvement

Parents are encouraged to participate in a variety of ways in the PreK program. Mothers and fathers volunteer to read, share skills, lead special events and assist with daily routines. Some parents enjoy joining the class for snack or lunch, while others choose to visit at the beginning or end of the day. Regular parent forums with the lead teachers provide an avenue for discussing age-based characteristics and concerns.

AN ALL-GIRLS' INDEPENDENT COLLEGE PREPARATORY SCHOOL FOR PREK-GRADE 12  •  Ithan Avenue & Conestoga Road, Rosemont, PA 19010  •  Tel 610.525.8400
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