Pre-First provides children with the “gift of time” by focusing on the growth and development of the whole child with equal concern for social, emotional, and physical maturity as well as intellectual growth. It provides a chance for children to continue to grow academically while offering more opportunities for exploration, individualized instruction, and play.
Handwriting instruction is incorporated into literacy throughout the day. Emphasis is placed on proper pencil grip and letter formation, as well as letter and word spacing. Handwriting instruction also involves strengthening fine motor skills.
Literacy instruction takes place throughout the school day. Students have multiple opportunities for whole group, small group, and individual instruction. Wesleyan uses the Orton-Gillingham multi-sensory approach.
Pre-First students enjoy the opportunity to engage daily in Writer’s Workshop. Writer’s Workshop is a student-centered framework for teaching writing that is based on the idea that students learn to write best when they write frequently, for extended periods of time, and on topics of their own choosing. The unites of study are personal narrative, non-fiction, opinion, and realistic fiction.
The Primary Mathematics program calls for direct instruction and focuses on mathematical thinking with immediate application of new skills to problem solving. By encouraging students to solve problems in a variety of ways, the program stretches the mind and promotes an understanding of the way math processes work. The program aims to help students develop logical thinking and critical lifelong problem-solving skills.
Social studies and science topics are taught through hands-on activities. Pre-First students participate in experiments, learn how to take care of various plants with a tower garden, and lead Lower School in a hygiene drive. Using the Picture Books Around the World curriculum, Pre-First students explore literature, art, geography, and indigenous animals around the world. They also enjoy project-based studies of frogs, owls, penguins, bees, and the five senses.