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Archive for the ‘Early Stimulation and Childhood Learning’ Category

Healthy Body and Mind

Students at The Goddard School® located in Gilbert, Arizona at Lindsay and Warner, benefit from our healthy eating and living program provided for children ages one to six. 

 

Children learn to make healthy food choices, identify various foods, investigate food ethnicity and observe the physical changes that take place during food preparation and digestion through The Goddard School.

 

Children who are introduced to healthy eating at an early age are more likely to choose good nutrition and fitness choices. ‑Learning about nutrition is apparent in all aspects of the Goddard curriculum:

 

  • Language Arts – children identify and name foods
  • Science – children explore their five senses
  • Math – children recognize time, weight and measurements
  • Art – children identify shapes and textures of various foods
  • Social Science – children use manners, show courtesy, cooperate and share
  • Safety – children are encouraged to use utensils and equipment properly
  • Physical Fitness – children engage in fitness activities
  • Music and Movement – children participate in healthy living songs, dance and finger-plays  

 

Multilingual Learners

Students at The Goddard School® located in Gilbert, Arizona at Warner and Lindsay, benefit from early exposure to sign language provided for children ages 6 weeks to 6 years. 

 

The sign language program, developed by Time to Sign, Inc., introduces children to American Sign Language (ASL), a manual form of communication where sign mimics experiences with ideas or objects.  Children, even infants, learn to sign through the use of songs, games, stories and play.

 

  • Research indicates that a bilingual approach with hearing children enhances literacy skills and activates brain growth and development.
  • Sign helps children communicate, understand, acquire, spell, speak and read words more effectively.
  • Sign has been shown to reduce conflict, facilitate an understanding of human emotions, and increase children’s confidence and self-esteem.
  • Sign allows babies to communicate their pre-verbal wants and needs.

Active Artists at The Goddard School!

Active Artists at The Goddard School!

 

Students at The Goddard School® located in Gilbert, Arizona at Warner and Lindsay, benefit from our art exposure program provided for children ages zero to six.

 

 

It is never too early to introduce children to great artists and artwork from around the world.  The Art History for Kids program takes children on a journey through time and geography, from cave art to modern art.  Influential artists and the contributions their art has made to culture and society are explored in terms that young children can understand.

 

  • Art History for Kids is a cross-curricular program that presents projects ranging from painting and sculpting to puzzles and large motor activities. 
  • Age-appropriate vocabulary, hands-on activities and games expose children to the culture and history of influential artists and their artwork.
  • The Goddard School is affiliated with art museums across the country to augment the learning opportunities in the Art History for Kids program.

The importance of Yoga for Young Children

Yippee We Have Yoga!

 

Students at The Goddard School® located in Gilbert, Arizona at Warner and Lindsay, benefit from our daily yoga class provided for children ages infants to six.

 

 

Teachers use the Apple Blossom Yoga guidelines, developed by the Yoga School, to augment cross-curricular learning through motor skills, science, math, language arts and social skills.  Using nature, animals, and a little imagination, young learners gain improvements in focus, body awareness and control, balance, creativity and flexibility. 

 

  • The program is designed to educate the “whole” child through age-appropriate activities to enhance the emotional, social, intellectual and physical development of each child.
  • Regular yoga practice helps children become more aware of their inner selves which, in turn, helps them learn to release anger, frustration and fears.

Physical fitness and basic movement skills assist in children’s spatial awareness, rhythm and creative expression.

 

Learning to Love Reading at an Early Age

Learning to Love Reading

 

Students at The Goddard School® located in Gilbert, Arizona at Warner and Lindsay, benefit from our literacy enrichment program provided for children ages zero to six.

 

 

The Building Language for Literacy™ program, by Scholastic®, equips children with the skills and experiences they need to build a foundation for success in reading.  Photographic PlaceBooks™, puppets, music and poetry feature language-loving characters who focus on the fundamentals of literacy, including oral language, phonological awareness, letter knowledge and concepts in print.

 

  • Research has shown that the early childhood years are critical to literacy development.
  • Phonological awareness, which is related to reading success, begins to develop through traditional rhymes and word games.
  • A print-rich environment helps children incorporate literacy into play and use literacy tools functionally.

Fluency in Numeracy at a Young Age

Fluency in Numeracy

 

Students at The Goddard School® located in Gilbert, Arizona at Warner and Lindsay, benefit from our numeracy enrichment program provided for children ages one to six.

 

 

The Newbridge® math program lays the foundation for math fluency and instills the test-related language of math in young minds through a shared learning and math readiness program. The 26 theme units teach key math concepts and reinforce the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Standards.

 

The program introduces children to: counting; logical thinking and predicting; comparing, classifying, and problem solving; coins, bills, and money related vocabulary; measurement tools; sorting; grouping and place value concepts; spatial relations concepts; weight, length and capacity.

 

According to the NCTM, in order to build children’s strength in the use of mathematical processes, instruction in these content areas should incorporate:

  • The use of mathematics to solve problems
  • An application of logical reasoning to justify procedures and solutions
  • An involvement in the design and analysis of multiple representations to learn, make connections among and communicate about the ideas within and outside of mathematics

Choosing a Quality Early Childhood program

How Do They Measure Up?

 

At The Goddard School® located in Gilbert at Warner and Lindsay,  we understand that selecting your child’s preschool may be one of your most important decisions.  That is why we have developed a helpful checklist.  Although you can’t measure everything in ten simple questions, we think you’ll agree that Goddard is raising the standard. 

  • Children are treated with respect in an atmosphere that nurtures their independence and self confidence.
  • Fitness, foreign language, music appreciation, yoga, nutrition, sign language, and manners are incorporated into the program. 
  • An Education Director and School Owner are on-site to provide dependable staff management and open communication with parents.  
  • A Daily Activity Report is prepared for each child and sent home with parents every day. 
  • Each classroom offers a multi-cultural and developmentally appropriate environment. 
  • Goddard teachers have access to professional development and continuing education credit authorized by IACET.
  • Teachers are CPR and First Aid certified.
  • Detailed Corporate Quality Assurance Reviews are conducted semi-annually in addition to state license inspection. 
  • Corporate Developmental Guidelines provide the foundation for individualized lesson plans which are brought to life in fun and imaginative ways. 
  • Programs are developed in coordination with child development specialist, Kyle D. Pruett, M.D.  Dr. Pruett is an authority on child development and has been practicing child and family psychiatry for over 25 years.  He is a clinical professor at Yale University’s Child Study Center.

Second Languages for Young Children

Second Languages for Young Children

 

According to language experts, six-month-old babies babble using 70 different sounds that make up all of the languages of the world.

 

Children are not preprogrammed with the language(s) of their parents; they learn the language of their environments. For example, the child of parents who consistently speak multiple languages in everyday conversations will naturally speak both languages.

 

Learning a second language is not as challenging for a young child as you may think. Teaching a one-year-old the word “red” and the Spanish version, “rojo,” is similar to teaching the words “stone” and “rock”. There is nothing confusing about this for a young child.

 

The key to teaching your child a second language is to immerse him or her in the language. Your child’s teacher probably does this throughout the day by labeling and referencing items and actions in the classroom in different languages. You can work with your child’s teacher by referencing these labels and incorporating the language into your child’s play at home. With your participation, the immersion is complete.

 

Remember, there are many forms of communication. Introducing young children to second languages such as Spanish, French and sign language encourages brain development in areas that would typically fall dormant. (Sign language can also demonstrate an infant’s listening vocabulary and fine motor development.)

 

Second languages celebrate cultural diversity and help to create an understanding of the written word. A second language can open doors and unleash curiosities of the world.

 

Whether your child is an infant or a preschooler, immersing him or her in a second language is the key to success. If the language is new to you as well, label your surroundings so the words are readily available. Following are some age-appropriate activities to help you incorporate a second language into your child’s daily routine.

 

Infant to One Year

  • Sign as you say words.
  • Sign in one word syllables (e.g., more, mom, dad, ball).
  • Gently move your child’s hands to make a sign.
  • Play music from around the world.

 

First Steps (12 to 18 months)

  • Add to signing vocabulary, use signs with verbal cues.
  • Say both the English word and the second language word for an object.
  • Practice the second language while playing ball (e.g., As you roll the ball to your child say, “Here comes the red ball, pelota roja.”)
  • Use the second language words interchangeably in your own speech.
  • Name body parts, animals and colors in the second language.

 

Toddler and Get Set (18 to 36 months)

  • Repeat everyday words in all languages.
  • Link words together.
  • Prompt your child to attempt new words.
  • While playing a game, such as “Memory,” recite words in both languages.
  • Begin to use common words in the second language without repeating in your native tongue.
  • Listen to music in other languages.

 

Preschool to Pre-Kindergarten (36 months +)

  • Use your everyday experiences for language opportunities (e.g., sign the food item you want your child to find at the grocery store).
  • Sing songs in other languages.
  • If your family has two native languages in your household, speak one language at home and the other outside of the home to practice proper language use.
  • Watch your child’s favorite movie in another language. Many DVDs now offer language choices.
  • Visit cultural fairs, food markets and restaurants of other cultures.

At The Goddard School, we offer Spanish and American Sign Language to our children.  We feel that it is very important for children to learn a second language at an early age.  For more information about our program please click here or call 480-633-3196 to learn more about our program.

The importance of early stimulation

Early Stimulation

by Kyle D. Pruett, M.D

 

Brain research tells us that, of the 100 billion (!) nerve cells we are born with, the ones we are most likely to keep longest are the ones that are used regularly in our interaction with the world around us. This does NOT mean that we can increase our child’s intellectual or developmental competence through so-called ‘brain stimulation’ videos or surround-sound cribs. Infants and toddlers enjoy learning first and best the things they learn in their relationships with the people that care for them.

 

Some things to keep in mind for the development of theirs:

 

  • Children can distinguish the voice of their father from their mother at birth – and their handling styles at six weeks.
  • The most useful kind of stimulation is the kind babies can manage, learn from, and interact with. Vocalizations like the coos and giggles they initiate should be returned in kind – matching volume, pitch, and rhythm if you can.Be alert because they’ll often throw in a variation.The same is true for older children who sing and initiate games like peek-a-boo or patty cake. Tapes or videos are no match for the joy and value of ‘live.’
  • Want to encourage a positive self-image? For babies, tender and frequent touch makes them feel treasured, and for toddlers and preschoolers, install a (safe) full-length mirror on the back of a door and provide dress-up or ‘pretend’ clothes and just watch them feel special.
  • Keep your eyes and ears open for emerging motor skills, interests, words, emotions, and feelings. When such competencies are new, they are both adorable and vulnerable. Remember not to overwhelm children by requesting a ‘show’ of their new tricks. This can be over-stimulating and cause quite the opposite effect – anxiety about new abilities instead of confidence. Let children practice and enjoy their new skill.

 

HOW you are as a parent with your children matters far more than any particular thing you may ever DO with them. Development is not a race; it is a process that unfolds uniquely in each child.Rushing development erodes children’s belief in, and joy of, their own emerging abilities, replacing joy with frustration and discouragement – too high a price in my book.

 

Suggested resource: www.zerotothree.org

 

Kyle D. Pruett, M.D. is an advisor for The Goddard School®.  Dr. Pruett is an authority on child development who has been practicing child and family psychiatry for over twenty-five years.  He is a clinical professor of child psychiatry at Yale University’s Child Study Center. 

 

 

The Goddard School is dedicated to an early learning environment.  To schedule a tour please call us at 480-633-3196 and to take an online tour of our school please click here.

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