KINDERGARTEN CURRICULUM OVERVIEW
The emphasis in Language Arts is to introduce the basic skills needed to be successful and independent readers. The total program includes the development of auditory and visual skills as well as writing skills and oral language and vocabulary development. Learning to read is an informal process in kindergarten. Listening and speaking opportunities take place constantly in the school environment. Our curriculum revolves around language and play experiences with sensitivity to a child’s growth and development.
Phonics and Phonological Awareness
An introduction of the sound/letter relationship is the foundation on which the other decoding skills depend. Our focus is to equip the child with simple and efficient decoding strategies that establish independence in reading (phonics). Phonological awareness includes letter sequencing, rhyming words, blending and segmenting sounds.
Students practice these skills through classroom lessons and the Lexia program during computer lab time.
Comprehension gives meaning to all of the decoded words that are read. This skill is developed in several different ways such as listening attentively to stories and recalling the main idea, characters, plot, predicting the outcome, details, cause and effect, and understanding the vocabulary involved in the reading selection.
Kindergartners enter school with a great desire and excitement to “do their numbers”. Our kindergarten math program is based on the development of number skills through frequent use of many kinds of manipulative materials as well as early paper pencil work. This provides the foundation for pattern development, comparisons, geometric shapes, graphing, simple time and money and learning basic number combinations
The kindergarten social studies program encompasses the child’s world of self, family, school, and friends. It extends into the community, country and world as well. Based on our core curriculum objectives, we will reach into the past by studying early explorations and settlements, medieval as well as modern history. Sociology is addressed in the curriculum through the study of Native Americans and world cultures. Students will also experience a study of famous American Presidents and American symbols. The geography component includes map and globe skills as well as basic landforms and major bodies of water.
The science curriculum includes life science, physical science and earth science. Life science areas involve discovering how animals such as mammals, butterflies, frogs relate to their environments. In addition, dinosaurs are studied. The area of physical science envelops magnets, buoyancy, density, sound, states of matter, and simple machines. Earth science explores seasons and weather, shadows and ecology. Plant life and growth are also explored. An awareness of the human body, including the five senses, body parts and their functions and daily health habits are also studied.
KINDERGARTEN ENRICHMENT CLASSES:
During their week at St. Mary’s Kindergarten student experience the following enrichment classes: