The Village Green Day School at Lowes Island Kindergarten Curriculum has been designed to integrate the essential elements of various models of early learning.
The curriculum has been developed to incorporate skills and concepts from the Core Knowledge Kindergarten curriculum, the Virginia Kindergarten Standards of Learning (SOLs), 1st grade entry requirements of our local public elementary schools, and best practices from other Kindergarten curriculums.
This program is designed for the kindergarten age child who has strong pre-academic and social/emotional skills. The full-day program and low teacher/pupil ratio allows our students to progress at an accelerated pace with individual attention from highly trained teachers. Each child moves onto the next educational level when he or she is ready.
The academic subjects (reading, writing, language, mathematics, social studies, geography, science, foreign language, and computer) are introduced using specially designed materials. Hands-on activities are utilized to reinforce lessons. Students then move on to a more abstract level as their skills develop. A screening tool utilized by our local public schools is administered to place children in an appropriate reading level where they receive individualized reading instruction.
The curriculum utilized in our kindergarten is the Core Knowledge curriculum developed by E.D. Hirsch. The curriculum provides children with specific, fundamental goals which help build a solid academic foundation on which new knowledge is layered. These sequenced learning experiences are organized into age groups: Foundation Level for 2½-3 year olds, Level I for 3 year olds, Level II for 4 year olds, and Kindergarten Level for 5 year olds. The comprehensive Core Knowledge curriculum helps us assess each student's individual needs, and meets those needs with instruction. The curriculum provides consistency and related vocabulary as a common ground between levels.
Village Green teachers follow the balanced objectives of the Core Knowledge guidelines to ensure that all areas of the curriculum are adequately covered within each age group. Teachers meet, talk, plan and work together to ensure a sequential learning pattern develops. Lesson plans are then approved by the Head of School. The Core Knowledge Kindergarten Sequence consists of objectives in Autonomy and Social Skills, Work Habits, Language, Mathematics, Orientation in Time, Orientation in Space, Science, Music and Visual Arts. Teachers use their educational background and vast experience working with children to develop lesson plans that creatively introduce and practice the objectives in the Core Knowledge curriculum.
For in depth information about Core Knowledge, click here.
In addition to the Core Knowledge Curriculum, Village Green values the strong connection between the students, teachers, and parents, and the community as a whole. It is important to work together to educate our children about being good citizens. These lessons are universal values practiced by generations in an effort to live lives filled with purpose and meaning. The Character Connection values introduced monthly at Village Green include Friendship, Fairness, Sharing, Kindness & Caring, Responsibility, Honesty, Respect, Cooperation, and Perseverance.
Fine Art Specials
In addition to the Core Knowledge curriculum, children spend time in Fine Art Specials that enrich their learning and social development at Village Green. Each of these programs is either taught by a specialist or a teacher who has been trained in that area of expertise.
Since music is such an important part of developing the young mind, our Music Program incorporates a variety of different instruments, songs, and movements to excite and engage the children. Each week the students learn about sounds and songs related to a given theme. Our Music Specialist also prepares the kindergarten children for musical performances where children learn songs with coordinating hand movements, and perform on risers for their families and friends.
Art has always been an important part of early childhood education. Our Art Program provides children an opportunity to not only produce their own art, but also explore and appreciate a variety of art forms from various master artists. Our Art Specialist incorporates famous artists and different art techniques into developmentally appropriate lessons.
Our Spanish Program introduces our students to a foreign language. Through instruction, music, and games the children learn Spanish words for topics such as Colors and Shapes, Numbers, the Calendar, My Family and Friends, My Body, Animals and Pets, and Holidays and Seasons.
Assessments are ongoing within the classroom and our experienced teachers adjust their lessons at the whole group level, and at the individual level, based on the knowledge they gain by working with the children. Teachers contact parents throughout the year if they have concerns about how a given child is progressing towards targeted skills.
Three times a year, in November, January, and June, the teachers formally assess the students, record their findings, and hold a conference with the parents to communicate a summary of how the child is progressing. During the January conference, the teacher will also recommend a developmentally appropriate program for the child for the following year.