One of the core values we have at The Learning Tree is that children are lifelong learners. We had to find the perfect curriculum to help us develop a love of learning in children from a young age. The HighScope curriculum allows us to create a learning environment in our classrooms to allow each child to grow and develop each and every day.
When you walk into a HighScope classroom, you will be able to tell right away. The children’s artwork is at their level, photos of the children and their families are displayed around the classroom and the room is filled with real and natural items for them to explore and make their learning experiences more real throughout the day.
HighScope’s daily routine begins each morning with Message Board. Our classrooms have a familiar routine each day and Message Board is a way to inform children if there are any new materials in the classroom, any changes to their day or if there is a new friend joining their classroom!
Children really begin to lead their learning with the plan do review process. Each day, they plan where they will be working in the classroom, all areas are available to them to play and explore. Depending on their age, they may use props, plan verbally, or simply choose an object. This planning helps give more meaning to their play, accesses higher level thinking skills and gives direction to their day. During their work time, children are actively engaged in play. They are learning all kinds of cognitive as well as social emotional concepts as they play with their peers and teachers. To end the play experience, the class comes back together and recalls their play experience; sharing what they did, who they played with, what they experienced that day.
At Small Group Time, children work in consistent small groups with their teachers as they explore sets of materials. They may be exploring science, art or math concepts as they work with open-ended materials to create, design, experiment and problem solve.
When the class comes together for Large Group Time, teachers and children participate together in leading the group in a different activity. Large group time allows children leadership opportunities while they are learning different skills from patterning to rhythm and directions.
The HighScope curriculum allows children to be actively involved in their learning. They explore new concepts and ideas each day. HighScope teachers are able to see how children progress through enjoying these experiences with them. As they engage with the children, they take anecdotal notes on what the children are doing, saying and interacting. These notes are entered into an online assessment system called “COR” and the teachers are able to track how each child is developing not just cognitively but physically and socially emotionally!