Full-day Kindergarten and First Grade

  • Maximum class size: 12 students with one teacher, as well as parent aides.
  • School hours: Full-Day 8:30 AM – 3:15 PM
  • Extended hours from 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Why do parents and students choose kindergarten and first grade at New Morning School?

Grounded in Research

By partnering with the staff at New Morning School you are giving your child a gift – a gift of an early foundation of learning and play which is grounded in the latest brain science and supported by the work of Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget.

Small Class Size

The class size is limited to 12 students.  One teacher is assisted by two teacher aides.

Individualized Attention

Students require a program designed to meet their needs in academic, social, and emotional areas. Individual attention span, maturity and social skills are appropriately meshed with academic skill development.  To meet the personalized needs of each child, teachers work individually with students and in small groups.

Multi-age Program

Students are able to fit in where they fit socially and academically. The teacher is able to group children for learning activities based on ability, not grade level.

Program Specialties

Personalized Attention

The teachers work with each child so that he/she experiences success with beginning academic skills. A student will not be pushed into academic areas, but will remain challenged by appropriate tasks.

Skill Assessment

The teacher determines the developmental level of each child by assessing academic skills, attention span and developmental needs. A skills checklist, called a rubric, is used to record and guide a child’s progress.

Individualized Program

Once his/her skill level is determined; a child’s program is developed. A student’s day is composed of activities planned by the teacher and chosen by the pupil.

Planning Skills

Each day, in conference with a teacher, students plan activities they wish to pursue. The teacher is responsible for helping each child develop a well-rounded program. Using a graphic plan, the child chooses individual tasks and joins group activities. The student learns to make choices and follow through with them. The day ends with a brief conference with the teacher. 

Project Work

New Morning School’s afternoon kindergarten class is inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach to early childhood education. This innovative approach builds on the interests of each student and helps learners make connections between prior knowledge and new understanding.

In the afternoon, planning is based on daily open-ended, self-selected activities alongside a question posed by each student.  Children state their questions and spend the remainder of the school week(s) using real-life problem-solving, peer interaction, and creative and critical thinking skills. When a child is ready, he/she presents to the class. Answers to the questions are represented by the daily work in art, science, math, and writing that children have undertaken.

Math

Math skills are introduced using many manipulatives. Counting, matching, sorting, and addition and subtraction with concrete objects reinforce the child’s understanding of math concepts. 

Language Arts

Writing

Beginning writing starts with a language experience approach. Students dictate stories for their journals, discuss letter names and sounds, and practice fine motor skills by copying or tracing the words. Visual, auditory and fine motor skills are developed through this process.

Reading and Phonics

Phonics skills are practiced daily in small groups, based on ability. Students are able to progress at a fast pace if that is right for the child. Every day there is a quiet reading time after lunch where children practice reading to themselves and to an adult.

Music

Circle time features music activities, musical instruments, songs, musical stories and fingerplays.

Science

Experiments and hands-on activities support group discussion, making science fun, challenging and interesting.  Students participate in regular discovery activities that involve hands-on scientific investigation.

Physical Education

Students attend gym class twice a week to improve cardiovascular health and develop large motor skills.

Art Classes

Students meet with the art teacher once a week to explore a variety of fine arts projects.

Museum Studies

Each winter, a student museum is developed with children choosing individual subjects of interest.  Topics are researched and shared in creative displays and multi-media presentations.  Skills are integrated as students read, write, graph, measure, draw and make models.  These in-depth studies and displays are shared with families and the community on Museum day.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is the class size?

One group of twelve children attend K – 1 each day. A teacher and two teacher aides assist the group.

What will happen during a school day?

Each day is different at New Morning School, but it’s important to have a predictable routine to the day, so that children feel safe. Our K – 1 classroom is thematically-based, meaning that new activities are set up for the children every day. The projects tie into a theme, such as the seasons, insect/ animal life cycles, our community. The topics are endless!

I’ve heard that the children plan their own day. What does that mean?

Based on the latest brain science research, the child’s program is structured as the child learns to use a plan-work-evaluate format. This means that after circle time each morning, the students plan their day, with help from the teacher. “I want to do an ABC game with my teacher. Maybe I’ll write a journal today. There is a math assignment for me to do today.”

This format, unique to New Morning School, is called a child-centered approach where children become engaged in their own learning, setting the foundation for a child who is curious and who loves school.

What is the typical schedule?

Here is the daily routine:

  7:00 The childcare aide greets students as they arrive. The children enjoy quiet activities or a breakfast they bring from home.
  8:30 The day starts with JumpStart to get heart rates up. The students go for a walk or move on the playground. This improves attention, short-term memory, and improves mood regulation.
  8:45 Circle time includes stories, sound of the week, movement, theme, calendar, and the weather.
  9:00 Children fill out plans and choose activities throughout the room.
10:30 On various days the students attend art class and also gym class.
11:30 Lunch
12:00 Outside time
     12:30 Quiet reading time
1:00 Work on student projects or continue activities from the morning
3:00 Outside time
 3:15 Dismissal
3:15 – 6:00 Kids’ Club child care available

How old must my child be to attend?  

Students must be five-years-old by September 1st of the school year.

How will my first grader be challenged?

The K-1 Curriculum is planned to meet the needs of children who are at or above grade level. The teacher will keep your child challenged as your child moves at a pace that’s right for him/her.

Do I pack a lunch?

Yes, because of the many food allergies and differences in food choices between families, each student brings a lunch and snacks each day. We will provide ideas for healthy lunches based on the latest brain research to keep your child in top form each day.

What else does my child need from home?

It’s best to have your child bring a backpack to school each day. This can include a change of clothes and other needed items. Please label clothing. Thank you.

 

What is the school calendar?

The academic year runs from the day after Labor Day through the second week in June. The school is closed two weeks during the Christmas holidays and one week for Spring Break.

How may I communicate with my child’s teacher?

Open communication between teachers and parents is encouraged. Every day your child’s individual plan comes home with notes from the teacher. This is a wonderful discussion-starter for your child to share about his/her day. Please contact your child’s teacher at any time to discuss progress. Parent conferences are scheduled three times per year. A conference may be conducted in person (preferred) or to meet your busy schedule using Zoom or email.

Foundation for Learning

You are giving your child the gift of a firm foundation which is an extension of your family values, intertwined with emerging skills in interpersonal relationships and personal responsibility – a gift of a lifetime.

Please schedule a visit to learn more about this program and see the children in action.

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