The Program Director and Board Members strive to ensure that the curriculum offerings
are developmentally appropriate and exceed the State Department of Education’s preschool
benchmarks. Experiences are chosen both to help prepare students for elementary school
and foster a love of learning.
The core of our curriculum is drawn from the Creative Curriculum® that is aligned with the Connecticut Early Learning & Development Standards. This environmentally-based approach focuses on teaching children through play where children acquire social competence and skills needed to succeed as learners. Creative Curriculum® allows teachers to plan based on children’s interests and to incorporate the diversity of their children and their teaching styles; thus, making the curriculum work for everyone and creating a classroom where children thrive. “Developing Talkers” is used to enhance literacy skills.
The Connecticut Preschool Assessment Framework is used to observe and measure child progress, guide instructions and individualize teaching strategies to maximize learning experiences. Upon hire, teachers are familiarized with the curriculum as part of their orientation and required to attend formal training within the first year of employment.
In addition to using the Creative Curriculum®, the center uses several other curriculum systems to achieve our objective, which will prepare children socially and emotionally. Children are guided to find creative and non-destructive ways to settle conflicts and live in harmony through the Peacemaking Skills for Little Kids developed by Peace Works / Peace Education Foundation. Children are encouraged to develop compassion, trust and sense of fairness and reverence for life. This is achieved through the use of songs and puppets, which incorporate a few cogent “I Care” rules.
The Early Learning Program, Inc. also addresses health and nutrition of its children, therefore the center incorporates I’m Moving, I’m Learning and The Great Body Shop, created by The Children’s Health Market into the curriculum. (The workshop on this curriculum is offered by The Board Of Education). This innovative system presents health and safety concepts in stories, learning centers, and music. It has a strong family component, with a weekly bulletin that chronicles the child’s understanding of the concepts presented and cassette tape of the theme song provided to each family.
A “Kindergarten Club” is established each January for the children preparing to enter school the following fall. K Club members will hear transition stories, which will elicit questions and responses to potential situations, they will attend cognitive-oriented events, and explore higher thinking skills.
Through the guidance provided by the State Department of Education, support from the New Britain School Readiness Council, and the involvement of parents and teachers, the program is confident that its school readiness program will more than appropriately prepare children for success in school.