The Early Childhood Curriculum at Grace Episcopal School features child-centered, hands-on activities, focusing on our students' needs through a developmentally designed and implemented program. Our curriculum is activity-oriented, giving children time to explore the world around them through hands-on experiences at learning centers designed to let children move at their own pace. The school setting provides a secure and nurturing environment in which children are able to develop positive self-esteem. Our Preschool and Junior Kindergarten classes meet 5 days a week. Our Preschool Class has older three year-olds and young fours. Junior Kindergarten is comprised of older four year-olds and young fives.
Our curriculum provides a balance between the development of language and math readiness, social and perceptual motor skills with dramatic play, art, music, science, and community living. Children are given the opportunity to develop fine and gross motor dexterity, social awareness, and thinking skills through exploration and planned activities. For outdoor play, children are provided with their own fully-equipped playground with age appropriate equipment. Library, music, and religion classes are an important part of their weekly schedule, with Spanish instruction beginning in Junior Kindergarten.
The following is a description of general areas covered within our curriculum. Age appropriate activities are planned for children to include a variety of experiences both in and out of the classroom. Adventures out of the classroom may be nature walks in the neighborhood, a trip to the farm, viewing a puppet show, experiencing the fun of a museum, or going to an art exhibit. As with any good early childhood program, curriculum areas are integrated. A number of skills may be derived from one experience.
Our challenging academic program emphasizes the basic tools of learning; reading, writing and mathematics. The curriculum is varied - rich in music, literature, art, history, foreign language, computers, physical education, and spiritual development - all taught in an enriching and nurturing environment. Grace elementary students receive dedicated, individual attention in small classes.
Our students learn to be creative, independent thinkers and successful problem solvers, eager to explore the world around them. This is accomplished by "growing" students who have strong skills in language arts, mathematics, science and social studies; students whose understanding of the world is broadened through working with the visual arts, music, drama and great literature; students nurtured by God's love and our caring faculty; students with a strong sense of moral values. Cooperative learning is stressed throughout the elementary grades.
All students in Kindergarten through Grade Five receive Spanish instruction. They all attend music/performing arts classes twice a week, and library, computer/technology and religion classes weekly. Students in Grades One through Five attend physical education classes twice a week and have a weekly studio art class. Kindergarten students have physical education class once a week and art instruction regularly with their class teachers. All Grace Episcopal School students attend chapel every week. All of these special academic subjects and activities are described in detail later in this publication.