The Kindergarten Section of Haque Academy has been following the High Scope Approach for nearly a decade now. The implementation of the High Scope approach began in 2005 and the journey towards understanding how children grow and learn continues, at Haque Academy, even today.
The High Scope Approach is based on the theory that children learn by actively ‘doing’. Through direct, hands-on experiences children try out, organize and integrate new information, ideas and concepts to build their understanding of the world. Active Participatory Learning – whether planned by adults or initiated by children – is the central element of the High Scope Preschool. A key strategy for adult-child interaction is sharing control with children. Even when activities are planned by adults around specific concepts, adults encourage children’s initiatives and choices. Trained adults who understand child development and how to promote a positive supportive climate in the preschool years offer guidance and support.
Our teachers support children’s active learning by organizing the environment, establishing a consistent daily routine; establishing a supportive social climate; encouraging children’s interests and activities, problem solving, planning small-and-large group learning experiences; and interpreting children’s actions in terms of the High/Scope key developmental Indicators.
Classroom Arrangement and Materials
At Haque Academy the Kindergarten’s premises and layout are refreshingly different. The Kindergarten classrooms are purpose built and has been designed by a professional interior design company. To support the High Scope Approach our classrooms are arranged with distinct, well-equipped interest areas, to promote and support active learning. The interest areas are organized around specific kinds of play; for example, block area, home area, table top toy area, book area, sand-and-water area, and art area. Based on the needs, interests, and abilities of students teachers make periodic changes to the environment and materials.
Each day, children engage in a consistent routine that allows time for children to plan, carry out, and reflect on their own learning as well as time to engage in small-and-large group activities. Central elements of the preschool daily routine include work time, small- and large-group times, story time, music time, and outside time.
High/Scope has identified Key Development Indicators in 5 main curriculum content areas for the preschool years. The KDIs are grouped into broad categories: approaches to learning; language, literacy, & communication; social and emotional development; physical development, health, and science; and the arts.
High Scope Curriculum integrates all aspects of young children’s development. It uses research-based strategies to enhance growth in cognitive, language, social-emotional, physical, and creative development. By using this system effectively we aim to make a significant difference in your child’s life.
While learning in these content areas prepares children for later schooling, High Scope takes the learning process beyond traditional academic subjects by applying methods that promote independence, curiosity, decision making, cooperation, persistence, creativity, and problem solving in young children.
One way that our teachers can understand and assess children’s development, interests, and needs within the context of the kindergarten classroom is through observation and documentation. Through systematic observation over time, and use of a variety of methods like anecdotal records, running records, checklists and work samples teachers are able to capture and record meaningful details that take into account all aspects of children’s development; allowing for a more complete view of the “whole child”. For example, when observing three children stringing beads and talking together about the shapes and colors of the beads, a teacher observes the children’s fine motor skills while also observing their cognitive, language, and social skills.
These observational records give teachers the information they need to select right materials, plan appropriate activities and enhance classroom routines and instructional practices in ways which are natural and meaningful for children. While formal assessment methods are required from time to time, systematic observation is the main tool used to gather information about the learner and to respond to their needs.
More than half of our ECE faculty is a graduate of Teacher Recource Center- Institute of Early Childhood Education and have an Early Childhood Education Certificate. To obtain this certificate teachers undergo a rigorous, in-service training programme for the duration of a year. In agreement with TRC, Haque Academy & Mrs. Haque’s Nursery are appointed as a placement school for student teachers who are enrolled in the TRC-IECE certificate program.
Additionally, at Haque Academy we have an ongoing in-service ECE professional development programme which is tailor made to the needs of our own teachers. We use various Professional Development methods like workshops, training seminars, study circles, planning meetings and peer observation to ensure teachers maintain high standards and continually strive to improve the quality of early childhood program being offered.
At Haque Academy we encourage the involvement of the family in school. On occasion, a family member can be found reading or conducting special activity with children. This type of commitment on the part of the families is supported. It promotes open communication between the families and the teachers and is essential to our school’s continuous development.
At Haque Academy, we believe that all children deserve a fair chance to succeed. Studies have shown that early detection of learning difficulties and getting children the necessary help in a timely manner can be key to a child’s future success in school. With this goal in mind, in collaboration with READ, Haque Academy has established a remedial department within the school premise, which caters to struggling learners through a pullout programme, within school hours.