Last Updated on Tuesday, 31 July 2012 19:23
The Junior Kindergarten curriculum consists of teacher directed activities, hands-on activities, and daily discovery time designed to lay the foundation for future learning. The following activities, with variations, are provided each day.
- Group time for devotionals, conversations, sharing experiences, readiness games, and stories
- Reading readiness hands-on activities
- Math readiness hands-on activities
- Movement, music, and finger plays
- Creative art projects and special units
- Supervised indoor and outdoor play
- Science/global awareness
This is a year of discovery and preparation for formal reading instruction as we concentrate on listening, speaking, and writing. Junior Kindergarten is the year when we fill the ‘toolbox’ with the tools needed to tackle reading and we use a variety of materials to prepare Junior Kindergarten students for reading. The areas of focus in reading include:
- Recognition of capital and lower case alphabet letters
- Letter/sound association in the initial position
- Classification of objects
- Development of vocabulary
- Discrimination of right and left as it relates to reading and writing
- Story comprehension
- Strengthening of listening skills
- Journal Writing
- Responding to text
Students will participate in Writer’s Workshop once a week after Fall Break. They will explore a variety of genres and have the opportunity to write freely as they begin to connect reading and writing with communicating with an audience.
Students in JK will check out a literacy bag once a week. Each literacy bag will contain a book and related object. Both are to be returned the following week in good condition. In the event that a book or object is lost or damaged, a replacement fee will be charged for the book and parents will be expected to purchase and replace the related object. Boys will not be allowed to check out another bag until these fees are paid or the bag is returned. In addition to instilling a love of reading, we hope to build responsibility and respect for property.
We use Handwriting Without Tears as our handwriting curriculum. It is a developmentally based program that works well for children of all abilities. It is a multi-sensory curriculum that is excellent for classroom and individual instruction. Areas of focus in handwriting include:
- Coloring, cutting, gluing
- Forming letters in first and last name
- Forming numerals 0-10
- Practicing copying alphabet letters
Math skills are guided by the Everyday Mathematics curriculum through the use of manipulatives which are available in our centers. An important part of our math study takes place during our calendar time each morning. During this time, we focus on many concepts of math (e.g. days, months, numbers, weather, counting, and graphing). Other math skills that are introduced include:
- Learning relational concepts: up/down, left/right, etc.
- Recognizing and drawing shapes
- Completing and creating patterns
- Learning to write numbers for picture sets
- Identifying penny, nickel, dime, and quarter
- Telling time to the hour
- Counting to 50
- Learning to use a calendar
- Graphs, colors, and measurement
- Identifying numbers to 20
JK students are exposed to two world languages. They will have instruction in Spanish or Mandarin every other day. Our goal is to expose the boys to both the language and culture as we guide them toward the development of an appreciation of the differences and commonalities among us as children of God.
Bible is taught twice a week and JK students attend Early Childhood chapel on Wednesday mornings. As part of our Building Boys Making Men program, each boy is taught that he is a unique creation of God and is valued and loved.
SCIENCE AND GLOBAL STUDIES
Science and social studies are taught through the use of thematic units. Incorporating art, music, literature, field trips, and hands-on experiences, students are encouraged to discover the world around them. The themes studied this year include:
- September My Body
- October Fall, Leaves, Trees, and Pumpkins
- November The First Thanksgiving
- December The Greatest Gift Of All
- January Winter, Snow, Bears, Hibernation
- February My Community
- March Spring Is In The Air
- April Dinosaurs
- May Mother’s Day
Art is incorporated in classroom activities through formal instruction as well as activities that reinforce concepts and enrich the learning experience. Students utilize different media such as painting, drawing, printmaking, construction, and collage. Through art, students explore their creativity while developing their small motor skills. We are interested in the creative process rather than the end product.
Students will experience sound and movement as we begin the development of an appreciation for music as an art form. They will explore ways to move their bodies in response to sounds and rhythm. Students will learn ways to focus their attention and demonstrate self-control in response to verbal cues as they hone these skills, which are so important to success in school.
JK students attend gym class three times in an A-F rotation where they learn the importance of staying strong and fit. Through developmentally appropriate activities, students work on coordination and overall physical wellness. Students should wear athletic shoes and socks on gym days.