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Curriculum


"Educators at The Nest: Early Learning Academy understand that the 10 targeted areas of development and content of the Creative Curriculum are an integration of the child’s whole being."

RCS preschool teaching staff hold rich and diverse experiences in Early Childhood Development (from training, to certification and licensure, to implementation). Of most recent focus in training, the teaching team has explored the content and approach offered through the Creative Curriculum by Teaching Strategies. The Creative Curriculum helps organize the areas of development and provides opportunity to experience concepts and build skills through fun and intentional studies (hands-on, project-based investigations of topics that are relevant to children’s everyday experiences). Educators at The Nest: Early Learning Academy understand that the 10 targeted areas of development and content of the Creative Curriculum encompass the child’s whole being.

We believe it is our job to provide an intentionally structured environment that will allow for a full and healthy satisfaction of the mind, body, and spirit. At The Nest, children are allowed time and space to explore and wonder - 2 things that are increasingly difficult to maintain in today’s world of “fast and now.” One of the greatest gifts of Early Childhood is that the young learner, by nature, possesses a mind capable of taking the world in through the senses. In our carefully designed classrooms and through thoughtfully prepared lessons, the 3-5 year old will absorb a wondrous world of vocabulary, build a mathematical and analytical mind through a strong sense of order, and will grow in curiosity, imagination, empathy, and confidence - all through a heightened power of observation!



The 10 Areas of Development

The Development and Content Areas listed below not only serve as a compass in our work with the children, but guide our communication with you on the growth of your preschool child as well. As adults, we tend to focus on the product more often than the process; when in fact, for our young learners, the end task is the process itself! Sometimes our role as adults is merely to move out of the way in order for the child to experience the process! Perhaps you’ve experienced the words “I can do it!” asserted by your child. As a member of the The Nest community, your child will experience a sense of pride and accomplishment in all that he/she can for him/herself.

SOCIAL-EMOTIONAL

Regulates own emotions and behaviors
  • Manages feelings
  • Follows limits and expectations
  • Takes care of own needs appropriately

Establishes and sustains positive relationships

  • Forms relationships with adults
  • Responds to emotional cues
  • Interacts with peers
  • Makes friends

Participates cooperatively and constructively in group situations
  • Balances needs and rights of self and others
  • Solves social problems

PHYSICAL

Demonstrates traveling skills
Demonstrates balancing skills
Demonstrates gross-motor manipulative skills
Demonstrates fine-motor strength and coordination

  • Uses fingers and hands
  • Uses writing and drawing tools

LANGUAGE

Listens to and understands increasingly complex language

  • Comprehends language
  • Follows directions
Uses language to express thoughts and needs
  • Uses an expanding expressive vocabulary
  • Speaks clearly
  • Uses conventional grammar
  • Tells about another time and place
Uses appropriate conversational and other communication skills
  • Engages in conversations
  • Uses social rules of language

COGNITIVE

Demonstrates positive approaches to learning

  • Attends and engages
  • Persists
  • Solves problems
  • Shows curiosity and motivation
  • Shows flexibility and inventiveness in thinking
Remembers and connects experiences
  • Recognizes and recalls
  • Makes connections
Uses classification skills

Uses symbols and images to represent something not present

  • Thinks symbolically
  • Engages in sociodramatic play

LITERACY

Demonstrates phonological awareness, phonics skills, and word recognition
  • Notices and discriminates rhyme
  • Notices and discriminates alliteration
  • Notices and discriminates discrete units of sound
  • Applies phonics rules and knowledge of word structure to decode text
Demonstrates knowledge of the alphabet
  • Identifies and names letters
  • Identifies letter-sound correspondences

Demonstrates knowledge of print and its uses

  • Uses and appreciates books and other texts
  • Uses print concepts

Comprehends and responds to books and other texts

  • Interacts during reading experiences, book conversations, and text reflections
  • Uses emergent reading skills
  • Retells stories and recounts details from informational texts
  • Uses context clues to read and comprehend texts
  • Reads fluently

Demonstrates emergent reading skills

  • Writes name
  • Writes to convey meaning
  • Writes using conventions

MATHEMATICS

Uses number concepts

  • Counts
  • Quantifies
  • Connects numerals with their quantities
  • Understands and uses place value and base ten
  • Applies properties of mathematical operations and relationship
  • Applies number combinations and mental number strategies in mathematical operations
Explores and describes spatial relationships and shapes
  • Understands spatial relationships
  • Understands shapes
Compares and measures
  • Measures objects
  • Measures time and money
  • Represents and analyzes data
Demonstrates knowledge of patterns


SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY

Uses scientific inquiry skills

Demonstrates knowledge of the characteristics of living things

Demonstrates knowledge of the physical properties of objects and materials

Demonstrates knowledge of Earth’s environment

Uses tools and other technology to perform tasks


SOCIAL STUDIES

Demonstrates knowledge about self

Shows basic understanding of people and how they live

Explores change related to familiar people or places

Demonstrates simple geographic knowledge


THE ARTS

Explores the visual arts

Explores musical concepts and expression

Explores dance and movement concepts

Explores drama through actions and language


ENGLISH LANGUAGE ACQUISITION

Demonstrates progress in listening to and understanding English

Demonstrates progress in speaking English


RELIGIOUS FORMATION

In addition to the areas of development and content set forth by the Creative Curriculum, RCS maintains the following objectives in the Religious Formation of the 3-5 yr. old child:

Students will explore the idea that God loves them. They will learn to celebrate their relationships with Jesus by loving and caring for others. Preschool children learn that we celebrate Jesus’s birth at Christmas and His death and resurrection at Easter. Through Bible stories, role plays, prayer and conversation, students will grow more familiar with the Holy Family, creation, saints and angels.