Description: We understand that success in learning requires the learner to be at the center of the experience, making connections across disciplines, and also across contextual settings. Children need to be presented opportunities to learn the same material in different settings and through different lenses. The traditional approach of teaching topics in isolation does not support the ways those children learn best. STEM, on the other hand, calls on parents/legal guardians and educators to give children chances to investigate an idea in a variety of settings, for what educators call cross-contextual learning. For example, in addition to math worksheets to help practice counting, we can take students outside to practice counting real objects they find, such as rocks, acorns, or leaves. Their learning is strengthened when they learn the same skills, ideas, and concepts in different contexts. Learning becomes more relevant when students go outside to explore nature, by asking the right questions, we can help stimulate investigations where student are identifying objects, making comparisons, making predictions, testing ideas, and sharing discoveries, all while observing their natural environment. Students can also explore sizes, shapes, patterns, and disciplines in different contexts all in ways that are naturally engaging to them. Unfortunately, in most academic instruction, children are in a passive or receptive mode instead of a more active or even interactive mode. Early childhood education should tap into children’s natural curiosity and give them ample opportunities to be active participants in their own learning. Natural settings offer children unlimited opportunities to explore and investigate, helping them build STEM skills that create a solid foundation for future learning. Science activities include exploring water and sand, comparing and contrasting natural materials (like rocks and soil), rolling balls across the room, and looking through a magnifying glass to count how many legs are on the bug that was caught during outdoor play. Technology activities include computerized gadgets, but also incorporate identifying simple machines like gears, wheels, and pulleys. Engineering activities in preschool happen in the block area. There, children plan and design structures every day with little teacher direction. Math activities include counting, matching shapes, and making patterns. Measuring is made easy too, especially with unit blocks where two of one size equal one of the next size up. (Excerpts taken from these resources: NAAEE’s Early Childhood environmental education programs, Children and Nature Network, Stem Sprouts) Benefits of our program: We include a S.T.E.M based program and include Early Learning research based set of 36 standards set by the early head start programs. Our program is hands on with interactive learning. Daily pledge of allegiance Expanded art activities with various mediums. Daily math experiences, counting, sorting, and graphing. Daily music, movement, and dramatic arts programs. Science areas to investigate, explore, and experience science in a hands-on way. Literacy includes plays, interactive felt books, early writing skills, and recognizing letters.Engineering includes building with various materials.Technology includes incorporating simple machines with gears, wheels, and pulleysAdditional Information: We offer a military discount for all families active or honorable discharge personnel. We accept Colorado Child Assistance program. Our teacher’s goals are to: To co-explore the learning experience with the children. To provoke ideas, problem solving, and conflict resolution. To help children hone their knowledge through projects. To help children see the connections in learning and experiences. To have a dialog about their projects with parent’s or legal guardians and other teachers. To foster the connection between home, school, and community. To take ideas from the children and return them for further exploration. To document children’s progress: visual, videotape, photos, and portfolios. To organize the classroom and materials to be accessible and interesting to the children. To organize the classroom and materials to help children make thoughtful decisions. Contact us for a free tour.
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