Spill the Beans
Poem Pack Additions:
- In The Kitchen
- Never Mind March
- The Pussywillow
- Wildflower Magic
- My Lady Spring
- Earth Day Cake
Spill the Beans
Poem Pack Additions:
Our Honeybee program is a Pre-Kindergarten as well as a Kindergarten/Kindergarten enrichment program. The Honeybee class is the culmination of classroom community building and layered learning. Here, students are ready to take on more in-depth exploration of their interests and ideas. The emergent curriculum (subject matter of high interest to the children) is implemented in an integrated manner through class discussions, partner or small team projects, thematic play, and free choice activities that allow for individual or group work. Students develop theories, and build upon them as they gain new knowledge. The teachers design and implement further activities or offer new materials to extend the theories. Through these in-depth studies, the children make the connections between various threads of the curriculum and realize that all of the curriculum areas are part of everyday life.
Life and learning involve integration of social, emotional, cognitive and spiritual experiences. Young children are capable, competent and naturally try to make sense of the world around them. When they see something new, they make a theory and then build knowledge much like scientists, building on what they know to get to what they don’t know. Working, playing and learning this way, our Honeybees get support, guidance, modeling and practice in becoming creative thinkers, problem solvers, group members, and most importantly life-long learners who engage eagerly in new learning.
As we take our cues from the children’s interests and develop our classroom themes, the subject area of our standard curriculum remains fresh, reflecting both arresting material and classic Pre-Kindergarten/Kindergarten skills such as:
Literacy – reading, writing, poetry anthologies and oral recitations, storytelling of classic myths, legends and tales from around the world, experienced both as listener and as storyteller.
Social Studies – citizenship, character education (with emphasis on kindness, inclusiveness, and communication skills) families (both human and animal), world culture research culminating in ‘formal’ oral reports (which include the presenter responding to questions from the listeners as well as in asking for constructive feedback), identification of continents and oceans and map reading.
Math – pattern recognition and creation, understanding and application of numbers, estimating, predicting, geometric figures, spatial relationships, measuring, graphing, interpretation of data and reasoning skills.
Science and Nature Studies – Our natural park like setting serves as a perfect laboratory for discovery. We study the environment, life sciences, physical sciences, the Earth and our universe.
Music and Movement – ‘steady beat’, pitch, tone matching and rhythm, creative movement and folk dances from around the world. We start each day with a music circle and lots of singing to help set a happy, upbeat tone for our time together.
Art – We create art to both support our studies and for pure aesthetic satisfaction. We learn about color, line, balance, form and various media.
The collaboration, cooperation, and readiness to take experiences to a deeper level underscore our belief these children can work toward competency, with guidance and modeling, in an environment of mutual respect. Our Honeybees celebrate their milestones weekly through poetry recitations, monthly in our class birthday circles, and in our more formalized oral presentations of world culture, our community worker presentation and finally through the exciting and complex dances we share at both our Winter Celebration and our Spring Art Festival.
The Honeybee year culminates with our highly anticipated “Spend the Night” at school and finally our beautiful and rich graduation ceremony. The children leave the Garden feeling a true sense of ownership of their experience here. The school is a part of them, and they are a part of the school!
We regularly hear from elementary school teachers and administrators that they can identify our Honeybee graduates by their strong communication and friendship skills as well as their ability to see themselves as empowered problem solvers and by their love of learning.