The Early Childhood program begins a student’s journey through Rohan Woods School. The focus in Early Childhood is learning academic skills in a way that allows each child to gain knowledge and skills at an individual pace while having fun! Your student is introduced to colors, shapes, letters, and numbers in fun and creative ways. Concepts are taught by playing games, making art projects, listening to stories and hands-on activities.
Communication and play are very important parts of the Early Childhood curriculum. Words and actions are modeled by older peers during buddy times, and teachers help facilitate and offer the words needed for peer interaction. The classroom is arranged for group or independent play to foster social growth by letting the children enter into social opportunities when they are ready. An openness to structured group play and parallel play (children playing alongside each other) helps build a sense of safety and security for the children. Our Early Childhood students have the freedom to make their own choices when the situation allows which builds self confidence and social awareness.
Each student in the Early Childhood Program experiences everything the older children do – from participating in all-school assemblies and performances, to being an integral part of the buddy program and attending specialty classes.
Foundational math concepts are developed in a variety of ways. Student’s instructional experiences include numerical recognition, counting by rote and one-to-one correspondence and learning about patterns. Introduction to the calendar, sorting and classifying, identifying and matching shapes and the utilization of problem solving skills are all integral parts of the daily routine.
Science themes are woven into the fabric of every day. Careful attention is paid to pursue the interests and curiosities of young children in developing skills in observing, experimenting and problem solving while encouraging them to try new activities.
Concepts are found throughout the curricula in the Early Childhood program at Rohan Woods. Students are introduced to letter recognition, vocabulary development and phonemic awareness through nursery rhymes, songs, poems and shared reading. Oral communication is the cornerstone of the program enhancing skill development through practice in listening, forming questions, and playing games with peers and adults.
The Early Childhood Program also provides experiences in Spanish, music and physical education. Our two year olds have an opportunity to transition to specialists’ classrooms just as their older friends do!
The development of fine motor and self-help skills fosters independence in each child. Children experience a variety of writing tools to focus on emergent writing skills. In order for students to become more independent, adaptive skill instruction in snapping, lacing and pouring occurs. Students are encouraged to try new experiences and become an active contributor to the classroom community.
Students in the Early Childhood Program have plenty of play time built naturally into the program to facilitate socialization, cognitive development and problem solving. In order to build a sense of community, they have an opportunity to play with students in our preschool program as well as with their buddies several times a week.
Meet Emily Otterson
Early Childhood Teacher
Emily Otterson, lead teacher in the Early Childhood program, has her BS in education from Millikin University. Emily has loved the educational field for the past 10 years, seven of which were at The St. Michael School of Clayton. She worked in several capacities at St. Michael’s, including the lead Toddler Teacher working with two and three year olds. Emily looks forward to her third year at Rohan Woods School in the EC room with her friends.