- Neuroscience and brain based Learning
- Theory of Multiple Intelligences
- Integrated theme based learning
- Blooms Taxonomy
- Linking activities with developmental milestones
Neuroscience and brain based Learning
- Each child’s brain and learning experience is unique.
- The brain uses patterns to organize information
- The brain is meant to benefit from good teaching and experiences.
- The brain needs to be properly hydrated to be alert.
- Small muscle exercise stimulates brain growth.
- Cross lateral movements keep both sides of the brain working.
- Novelty increases attention.
- Improper praise or reward negatively effects learning.
|Brain fact||How it influences our preschool
curriculum and environment
|Each child’s brain and learning experience is unique.||Please see section on Multiple Intelligences.|
|The brain uses patterns to organise information.||Please see section on Theme-based Learning.|
|The brain is designed to benefit from good teaching and experiences.||At KKEL Preschools, we provide a rich stimulating environment that helps the brain make connections.
Physically: Child-friendly colours (not over bright, jarring ones), textures, children's displays, teaching architecture, a variety of spaces, teaching aids, active/passive learning, personalized spaces etc.
Emotionally: Providing care and security by bonding with children and taking care of their needs.
|The brain needs to be properly hydrated to be alert.||We allow children to drink water whenever they ask for it.|
|Small muscle exercise stimulates brain growth.||We provide finger play activities every day, besides water play activities that exercise the small muscles, such as using eyedroppers and sponges to transfer water. We conduct clapping and dancing activities for creative movement, like ‘Open, Shut Them’ and ‘If You're Happy and You Know It’.|
|Cross lateral movements keep both sides of the brain working.||We conduct exercises that require cross lateral movements, such as twisting at the waist with arms stretched to the side, bending at the waist to touch left hand to right toe and right hand to left toe. Children sing songs like ‘Hot Cross Buns’ accompanied by hand movements that cross the midline of the body. We have dancing to music with streamers and scarves.|
|Novelty increases attention.||We rotate toys and equipment at the Activity Centres. Gymbo the Clown comes to class to introduce concepts.|
|Reward or praise can negatively affect learning!||We encourage teachers to use feedback instead of praise. For example, instead of saying "That's a great painting", the teacher says, "The brown and yellow colours you used for the trees helps to give a wintry look to your painting." Similarly, we use encouragement instead of praise. For example, "I can tell you have put a lot of effort into your drawing."|
Theory of Multiple Intelligences
Harvard University Professor Howard Gardner’s famous Theory of Multiple Intelligences (MI) states that every child has eight types of intelligences. Gardner's Multiple Intelligences theory is a very useful model for developing a systematic approach to nurturing and teaching children and honoring their individual needs and strengths within a classroom setting. This is possible by providing a planned cycle of experiences and opportunities which foster each and every intelligence, and by making these opportunities available to every child in our classrooms.
|Type of intelligence||It means the ability to…||How it is developed|
|Absorb information and communicate through reading, writing, speaking and listening||Story telling, Nursery rhymes/songs, Books, Labelling objects, Sight word reading, Letter matching, Easel art, Crayon scribbling|
|Use numbers and reasoning effectively||Matching games, Activities that allow children to sort items by size, shape and colour, Patterning (Pegs/peg boards), puzzles|
|Visualize and create representations of what one sees||Painting, Drawing, Finger painting, Collage making, Making objects out of play dough, Block building, Books, Puzzles, Movies and charts|
|Understand and master both gross motor and fine motor skills||Playing with balls, Jumping into hoops, Marching, Dance, Aerobics, Role play, Block play, Puzzles and all other fine motor activities|
|Relate to music through enjoyment, creation and performance of it||Singing songs, reciting rhymes, playing with musical instruments, music/movement activities|
|Interact with people and understand them and their behaviours||Community helpers as guest speakers, Role/dramatic play and field trips|
|Understand oneself, including one’s feelings and motivations||Art activities, Worksheets, Computers, Book corner, Free art|
|Recognize, appreciate and understand the natural world||Pet visits, Nature related art projects, Painting with twigs/sticks,
Exploring toys that represent nature (rubber toys of animals and insects), Pretend outdoor activity (rowing a boat, fishing, going on a hunt), Exploring different textures in nature (water, gravel, twigs, leaves)
Integrated theme based learning:
Using themes to organize instructions for young children has been popular since John Dewey, an American philosopher, psychologist, and educational reformer first proposed the curriculum should be related to real-life experiences. Theme teaching helps children to form complex concepts from fragments of information.
Not only does theme teaching enhance children’s concept development, it also provides a means for integrating content learning and processes learning in ways that are meaningful to them.
Bloom's Taxonomy was created in 1956 under the leadership of educational psychologist Dr Benjamin Bloom in order to promote higher forms of thinking in education. This includes analyzing, evaluating and creating concepts, rather than just remembering facts (rote learning). Our curriculum is based on Bloom’s Taxonomy. This helps our students to master higher order thinking skills, equipping them to convert their knowledge into solutions for real life problems.
|Lower-order questions||Higher-order questions|
|Examples||Which new toy was given to Peter?||Why do you think Peter was given the new toy?|
|Can you tell me the story in your own words?||Can you think of a different end to the story?|
|Require||Remembering and understanding||Complex application, analysis, evaluation or creation|
|Useful for||Evaluation, preparation and comprehension.||Encouraging students to think deeper and critically evaluate|
|Diagnosing strengths and weaknesses||Problem solving|
|Reviewing and summarising the content||Encouraging discussions|
|Stimulating students to seek information on their own|
Linking activities with developmental milestones
Research shows that introducing a skill when the child is truly ready leads to mastery instead of frustration. Then, building on that skill to learn the next one comes naturally and learning becomes so much fun!
|Type of development||Milestone||Classroom activity|
|Social/ Emotional||Has a sense of self||Children are taught to recognize their feelings and manage them appropriately through role-plays, story time and circle time.
|Responsibility for Self and Others||Children are given opportunities to be classroom monitors in preschool years 3 and 4.
They are encouraged to make their classroom rules and consequences for the same.
|Pro-social Behaviour||In the learning centres and outdoor play; children are encouraged to play well and share with others.
They are taught to use thinking skills to resolve conflicts This is done through story time and circle time activities.
|Physical||Gross Motor Development||Through the PMP (Perceptual Motor Programme), children are encouraged to develop locomotor skills (running, jumping, hopping, galloping, throwing, kicking, catching) and other gross motor skills.
Organized indoor and outdoor games are conducted.
|Fine Motor Development||Children are encouraged to use writing and drawing tools to develop eye-hand co-ordination and dexterity.
Activities like paper crumpling, clay modelling, using scissors are also conducted.
|Cognitive||Learning and Problem Solving||Children explore cause and effect by conducting science experiments
Field trips and excursions are organised for experiential learning.
|Logical Thinking||Activities where children classify, compare, measure and arrange objects in series are conducted.
Children are introduced to the concept of time and activities that build awareness of position in space.
|Representation and Symbolic Thinking||Activities like role-plays, dramatization of stories and using puppets are conducted.|
|Language||Learning and Problem Solving||Activities like conversation time, picture talk, listening posts and the early literacy programme are conducted|
|Reading and Writing||Pre reading and pre writing activities like finger tracing, crayon scribbling, writing paths.
Identifying and naming letters and numerals.
The Sight Reading Programmes are conducted throughout all pre school years