The Greenwood Garden School program bases its philosophy on the concept that each child is special, with individual and unique needs. Children learn at their own rate of development, through exploration and discovery in an integrated, multi-aged and multi-cultural environment. Children learn best by doing, with an emphasis on the process rather than the product.
We believe that the Early Childhood experience is a very important foundation for all children’s future learning attitudes. Children learn through play. What may look like “play” is actually a child’s “work”. Through directed play and learning centers children recreate experiences that help them understand the world. When you look in the classroom and see the children building with blocks, dressing up, modeling with clay, interacting with technology and many other play activities, learning is taking place. We are laying corner stones for math, science and reading. Children are learning HOW to think, not WHAT to think. They are also enhancing a positive self-esteem.
We teach to the seven areas of learning identified by the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Statutory Framework: personal, social and emotional development; communication and language; physical development; literacy; mathematics; understanding the world (science); and expressive arts and design. We promote the educational theories of Jean Piaget’s stages of cognitive development, Howard Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences, Maria Montessori’s practical life experiences, Daniel Goleman’s theory of emotional intelligence and Lev Vygotsky’s theory of play and Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD).
Your child’s transition from home to school is encouraged in a caring and safe environment. The children are allowed to learn in a variety of ways to accommodate their learning preferences (auditory, visual, kinesthetic). They learn by doing sequential activities in all areas. The program balances small group and large group activities, quiet and noisy activities, large muscle and fine motor activities, listening and participation activities. Clear, age-appropriate expectations are set for behavior, letting the children know what is expected of them at school and allowing the teacher to encourage success while minimizing frustrations. Children feel valued, and the program helps them to develop a sense of trust and ownership with their school and learning.
Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.