Learning through play is fundamental to the philosophy of learning at MIST Kindergarten. We recognize that play is an essential element in all aspects of the growth of young children, providing a situation where they control the events and construct knowledge. Important conceptual, social, and language skills are developed during these times. Through play they explore their environment, learn to deal with problems, and learn to work within a group.
As children have their own unique learning styles and developmental rates, we provide a blend of carefully-structured and free-play activities to teach early concepts. Many activities throughout the day are planned that enable children to make choices.
This element of choice, allows children to develop skills at their own pace with the appropriate assistance of the teacher. This child-centred curriculum encourages autonomy, choice-making, and social competence. At the same time, each child is taught to take responsibility for themselves and their actions.
In accordance with the UK Early Years Frameworks, we cover six areas in our program, all of which are of equal importance, and are delivered in a planned and purposeful way, with a balance of adult-led and child-initiated activities:
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Children are provided with experiences and support which will help them to develop a positive sense of themselves and of others; respect for others; social skills; and a positive disposition to learn. We provide support for our children’s emotional well-being to help them to know themselves and what they can achieve.
- Communication, Language and Literacy
We support children’s learning and competence in communicating, speaking and listening, beginning to read and write, and extend them where possible. Children are provided with opportunity and encouragement to use their skills in a range of situations and for a range of purposes, and supported in developing the confidence to do so.
- Problem Solving, Reasoning and Numeracy
Children are supported in developing their understanding of problem solving, reasoning and numeracy in a broad range of contexts. They can explore, enjoy, learn, practise and talk about their developing understanding. We give them a number of opportunities to practice and extend their skills in these areas and to gain confidence and competence in their use.
- Knowledge and Understanding of the World
MIST believes that children must be supported in developing the knowledge, skills and understanding that help them to make sense of the world and therefore support their learning through offering opportunities for them to use a range of tools safely; encounter creatures, people, plants and objects in their natural environments and in real-life situations; undertake practical ‘experiments’; and work with a range of materials.
- Physical Development
The physical development of young children must be encouraged through the provision of opportunities for them to be active and interactive and to improve their skills of coordination, control, manipulation and movement. At MIST Kindergarten, we support our learners in using all of their senses to learn about the world around them and to make connections between new information and what they already know. They are also taught to make healthy food choices.
- Creative Development
We try to extend children’s creativity by providing them with support for their curiosity, exploration and play. They are given numerous opportunities to explore and share their thoughts, ideas and feelings, through a variety of art, music, dance, movement, mathematics, imaginative and role-play activities, and design and technology.