Developing the Whole Child
At Alphabet Academy & The Nest we focus our efforts on developing the whole child; social and emotional development, cognitive development, speech and language development, fine and gross motor development, as well as logical-mathematical intelligence, creative expression through art, music, drama, dance and nutritional awareness.
Our preschool curriculum guides our teachers to incorporate:
1. Cognitive Development
- A literature rich environment where the child has opportunities to engage in story times during both group and one-to-one settings
- Daily opportunities for various types of writing activities with and without assistance, from tracing letters to creating classroom stories
- Encourage children to explore various types of printed materials
- Prompt phonological awareness through rhyming, word games, I Spy, poems, songs, finger plays, movement, and the weekly focus letter
2. Social and Emotional Development
- Awareness of the child’s emotions and the precursor to the emotion
- Recognition of emotions as an opportunity for intimacy and teaching
- Listening emphatically and validating the child’s feelings
- Helping the child to verbally label emotions
- Setting limits while helping the child to problem solve
3. Speech and Language Development
- Provide various opportunities throughout the day for both verbal and nonverbal communication
- Engage in classroom discussions, question and answer sessions, songs, retelling of daily events, and personal stories
- Encourage and facilitate/scaffold discussions between peers and other students
- Incorporate multilingual intelligence by introducing foreign language words, stories, phrases and songs.
- Provide real life situations in which speech is encouraged and rewarded ie: field trips, classroom guests
4. Fine and Gross Motor Development
- Incorporate cutting, gluing, tearing, drawing, buttoning, zippering as well as hand washing and eating with utensils.
- Incorporate running, jumping, hopping, dancing, swinging, and climbing daily. We create experiences that foster a variety of skills; balance, strength, coordination and structure; kinesthetic sense.
- Allowing appropriate risk taking in a safe and supervised environment.
5. Logical-Mathematical Intelligence
- Skills are enhanced by providing various materials that foster the concepts of size, shape, color, patterns, numbers, comparisons, and ratios.
- Understanding the concept of time (duration and times of the day), measurement and quantity are infused throughout the day through everyday conversation and exposure to various and repetitive activities.
- Exposure to simple math (adding, subtracting and division) and conventional time telling tools (clock and calendar).
- Children are exposed to many different types of music throughout the day. We use music as a way of expression and as a facilitator of quiet times. We also enjoy an array of eclectic and world music in the classroom.
- Children are encouraged to reenact scenarios that they have heard in a book or a song as well as acting for their peers during a game of charades.
- Dance and movement are a great way to express feelings and we regularly provide times for the children to move. Our use of musical instruments provide understanding of beat, rhythm, tone and volume.
- Multi-step art projects are incorporated. Skills are developed that foster artistic expression, artistic appreciation and creative thinking. Many art related materials are at the children’s disposal throughout the day; glue, assorted paper, crayons, bark, sticks, leaves, pencils, wooden sticks, markers, paints, etc.
7. Nutritional Awareness
At Alphabet Academy & The Nest, we believe that it is a basic right for all children to receive well-balanced meals and a healthy eating environment. We know that a holistic diet consists of fresh and organic fruits, vegetables, grains, dairy, and complete proteins.
- Through a hands on approach we examine and discuss food groups, healthy choices, fresh vs. processed, and serving sizes.
- The children engage in planting, growing, and tasting various types of fruits, vegetables, and grains. These types of activities are followed up with discussions, graphs, and charts.
- By providing children with a colorful and diverse plate, we allow them to make healthy choices which will influence them throughout their lifetime.