Children start to develop initiative and sense of accomplishment during the preschool years. They need to do things on their own and plan. Through repeated actions of play, with variations, in different contexts or on different kinds of objects, children learn to differentiate, compare and integrate elements, think in cause-and-effect terms as well as plan their play/actions. Preschoolers can make not only simple verbal categorizations but also, while manipulating concrete materials, they can indicate two or three common features at the same time.
The language materials include objects and pictures, which are matched, labelled and classified by the children to develop vocabulary. Our story reading and group songs develop listening skills and self-confidence with verbal expressions.
At Precious Pearls, we greatly emphasize communication. Educators guide children with a variety of rich, constructive conversations and stories as well as have many one-on-one interactions with children exposing them to new words and abstract thinking. The use of specific, fun materials all provided in context and through play help children link sounds and letter symbols, understand numbers and the concept of counting, adding and subtracting. The children are also introduced to writing alphabetical letters, their names and are introduced to early reading.
These activities include tasks children see as part of the daily routine in their home, such as preparing snack, sweeping, watering plants or cleaning up after their play. To each child, these are meaningful activities that involve caring for themselves, others and their environment. Through these activities, children develop hand-eye coordination, concentration, fine and gross motor movement.
Preschoolers learn best and retain the most information when they engage all their senses. At Precious Pearls, these materials are taken from the real world, examples may include but not limited to acorns, yarn, corn seeds, leaves, sand, rocks of various textures and shapes, different textures and colors of paper and many more. Through our sensory play, preschoolers sharpen their decision making, problem solving, sorting and classifying skills. The sensory area also encourages preschoolers to use descriptive and expressive language skills. A lot of cause and effect and gravity skills as well as states of matter are acquired through our science experiments. Without realizing it, preschoolers grow into little scientists by making predictions and observations developing even basic analytical skills.
The art and music programs are the foundation for learning in a fun and creative manner. Preschoolers have the opportunity to pick and choose the materials they like to use not limiting them to time. Working under the guidance of the teachers on their projects may vary in length of time, some may last a few hours, others up to two weeks.
The preschoolers have access to a variety of large gross motor activities indoors and outdoors, which help them to develop coordination, balance and muscle strength. In our full of nature and secure outdoor play area, preschoolers get a chance to learn concepts of life cycles of insects and plants as well as practice getting along with each other. Activities such as raking, imaginative play and collecting wonders of nature in their baskets, all encourage the constructive conversations the preschoolers may have with their teachers and peers. New ideas then emerge that are needed for their next educational projects.