Language and Literacy
We use the Oxford Reading Tree from the United Kingdom as our core reading scheme. This wide ranging scheme is supplemented by a selection of fiction and non-fiction works as reading fluency builds. The child progresses to basic literacy skills in Nursery and Kindergarten 1 to an understanding and enjoyment of text during Kindergarten 2. Reading and language are coupled with individual creativity and fluency in writing skills. Conversation, drama and singing are an integral part of our whole language approach to the growth of literacy skills in the classroom as well as in the aesthetics programme.
The central focus of our maths programme is problem solving, building on a child’s intuitive insights and prior knowledge. We follow a language-based approach, similar to the methods used by Singapore schools for problem solving. The children gain their understanding of mathematical concepts and skills through the use of written and oral language. They are introduced to symbolic language gradually after experiencing ‘hands on’ concrete and pictorial materials to discover concepts for themselves. The teachers encourage students to talk and write about mathematics and children are stimulated to observe, discuss, explain and create mathematical solutions.
Physical Education lessons are held on a weekly basis, when the children learn to cooperate in groups and to work in teams. During this time they develop both fine and large motor skills, whilst having fun in the playground.
Computer work is integrated throughout the curriculum. Computers in the classroom allows each child regular access to the computer so that every student grows familiar with the technology, learning to think and write naturally with a computer. The Oxford Reading Tree language programme is stored on all our computers, enabling students to practise reading from a variety of media. For some children computers stimulate curiosity and develop a desire to learn that may not be evident using other techniques
Cookery and Science
The children enjoy regular science based activities through cooking. The lessons are great fun, encourage cooperation and promote healthy attitudes towards eating. Cooking classes provide natural practice for estimating, measuring, dividing and other related maths skills, observation, experimentation, language and number practice. For safety, children prepare the food in the classroom. The food is then taken to the kitchen for baking and returned to the classroom for the best part- eating!
Art and Craft
In these early years many areas of the curriculum are expressed through art and craft. This stimulates the children’s interest and at the same time develops their creative thought. Through these activities their fine motor skills, so necessary for later schooling, are developed. In each year group, the children are exposed to a wide range of materials and techniques appropriate to their development.
We realise the importance of a high standard of spoken and written Chinese to the child entering Primary 1. To this end, our programme has been designed in conjunction with a Singapore educational consultant, to fulfill the requirements of the Ministry of Education at initial Primary 1 level. At Nursery level our work is entirely oral, developing ear training and an awareness of sounds. Vocabulary is built through song, language games, activities and stories. Written work begins in earnest in Kindergarten 1 as vocabulary builds and extends to story writing in Kindergarten 2.
Visiting specialist teachers from Julia Gabriel Centre conduct EduDrama (speech and drama) and Music sessions once a week with each class.
Young Performers Certificate (YPC)
Kindergarten 1 and Kindergarten 2 classes at Chiltern House Preschool work towards completing Trinity College London’s Young Performers Certificate (normally Kindergarten 1 classes do the Silver Award and Kindergarten 2 classes do the Gold Award). The students in each of our kindergarten classes build their performing and communication skills by putting together a group performance (approximately 10 – 15 minutes long) incorporating multiple performance skills which may include acting, storytelling, presenting poetry or prose, mime, expressive movement and puppetry, which is presented in front of a Trinity College London examiner.