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 daily phonics and spelling activities. Emphasis is placed on proper pencil grip and letter formation, as well as letter and word spacing. Handwriting instruction involves strengthening fine motor skills.
Literacy instruction takes place throughout the entire school day through every subject and activity. Students have multiple opportunities for whole group, small group, and individual instruction. Wesleyan uses the Orton-Gillingham multi-sensory approach to teach phonemic awareness, phonics, spelling, and reading.
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 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 in our tower garden, and engage in research about butterflies. Using the Picture Books Around the World curriculum, pre-first students explore literature, art, cooking, poetry, and indigenous animals around the world. They also enjoy project-based studies of frogs, owls, penguins, and the five senses.