Authentic learning occurs when activities or projects offer children an opportunity to apply their knowledge or skills to real-world situations. Children engage and learn more when activities, discussions, and materials are related to their surroundings and to real life examples.
Learning activities and content should be linked with a particular theme or project. Themes are ideal for integrating learning across the curriculum, creating an environment that supports language development, helps children see connections, and enables them to make their own connections. Thematic units support creative thinking, combine the different ways that young children learn, and make learning fun!
Themes provide structure and format for learning, but there is always room to follow children’s emerging interests. Our curriculum gives the teachers the flexibility to extend or shorten the time spent on a theme based on the level of interest.
When you observe an interest emerging, work with the children to find more ways to explore the topic and deepen their understanding. Take children’s interests and combine them with educational goals to plan engaging experiences. Research shows that when children are interested, they learn more from the experience.
Thematic goals are the specific knowledge related to a topic that teachers want children to learn. Teachers and children determine specific topics to investigate. Teachers plan experiences will teach children the procedural, factual and conceptual goals of the topic.
Our curriculum is divided into four broad themes. Each theme lasts approximately 3 months. The themes start with the child at the center, then move to the larger world, involving people and places all around the globe. Specifically, it guides children in an age-appropriate manner through an exploration of:
With each theme, there are areas of focus. An area of focus is more specific than a theme, but still broad enough to allow for several topics to be explored within it. Each topic is designed for deep exploration through experiential activities and projects.<!—The website is up!! -- SlopesideTechnology.com -->