Group Childcare - 36 Months to 5 Years Old

Overview (Group 2.5 to 5 years)

Children come to our centre as individuals, each with their own unique blend of intelligence, personality, temperament, talent, interests and so much more. Our commitment is in creating an environment that both nurtures and supports these precious ad unique blends.

We have designed and implemented a strong, rich, and creative curriculum applied in a bilingual French/English environment. This curriculum centers around inspiring a child’s love of learning as well as fostering their joy for discovery. We accomplish this through language enrichment, artistic expression, learning through play, and with hands-on experiences. At Children of the Island, we strengthen all developmental domains (physical, social, emotional, cognitive, and artistic) while promoting respect of self, respect for others, and respect for our surrounding environment and community.  Our dedicated and passionate educators encourage and promote a sense of independence and autonomy by providing each child with varied ways and opportunities to experience, explore, and interact with the world around them. This is all provided for within a safe, joyful, loving, and unhurried environment.

Within our classrooms, materials and routines are designed to support our curriculum and  encourage a learning through play approach. Learning through play has been identified as vital to a child’s early development, and is key in laying the foundations for: learning to read and write, learning mathematics, science, technology, and a for providing a foundation for the arts.

Language Arts / Literacy Readiness: We read poems and rhymes; engage in storytelling, puppetry, and interactive book reading; we have book corner, circle time, and show and tell; and encourage printing work, learning letters, letter / sound correlation.

Math Readiness: The children engage in counting, sorting, ordering, measurement and weight concepts, learning numerals, and printing numbers.

Creative / Social Play: Our space provides kitchen corner, doll corner, monthly theme play area, dress-up, puppets, block play, board games, and outdoor play.

Fine Motor: Through arts and crafts, the children are engaged with scissors work, stringing, pinching, pouring, sewing, pounding, scooping, gluing and taping, tracing, snack preparation and cooking classes.

Gross Motor (inside classroom): Weekly creative movement trough fun adapted ZUMBA classes, obstacle courses, ball play (throwing, catching and rolling), jumping, hopping, and skipping games.

Outdoor Play: Children play outside everyday rain or shine in our beautiful nature inspired play space. We have created a wonderful obstacle course play structure built with natural materials found right here on our beautiful island.

Science / Nature: We study animal and plant, conduct experiments  and learn through observation, deduction, and cause and effect. We grow vegetables and wheat, and then using our fresh ingredients, the children get to create great recipes in our cooking classes.

Arts and Crafts: Children participate in painting, drawing, coloring, clay work, collage, murals, recycled art, and paper mache.

Tactile Play: manipulative play with: water, flour, seeds, ice, soil, sensory boards and bins.

Snack Preparation and Snack Time: Every day a few children volunteer to work with our educator to prepare and help serve snack which involves sorting fruits and vegetables, plating cheese and bread, spreading toppings (hummus, honey, jam), scooping yogurt, cereal etc. into bowls, setting the tables and pouring water into glasses. Snack is a joyful, social time for the entire group which provides many opportunities to learn about the importance of health and nutrition, and helps in learning to identify different food groups. This is also a great time to talk about different tastes, smells, colors, and textures and a perfect setting for conversing all together.

Problem Solving: engagement with puzzles, board games, block play, construction games, science experiments, and memory games.

Circle Time: During our circles there is singing, poems, movement, games, seasons, months of the year, and days of the week. Circle time is also a great space for children to share their stories.

Highlights and Strategies of our curriculum

Our educators foster individual well-being by adapting to each child's unique developmental levels and needs. They encourage personal growth through modeling, guidance, and teaching. Our teachers also work with the children to stimulate their interests, build upon their strengths and bolster areas that may need development.

To ensure success, educator-guided activities are well balanced between play/free-choice activities and a variety of both open-ended and structured work/play activities.

Monthly Themes

The overall curriculum, themes and activities are based primarily, but not exclusively, on nature and the changing cycles of the year. Each month, themes revolve around one or more projects that integrate learning and skill-building across several subject areas. Some monthly themes examples include: Forest Life, Sea Life, Pond Habitats, Nocturnal Animals, Vancouver Island wildlife, solar system, and weather.

We use themes as a method for enhancing and integrating learning across all aspects of the curriculum. This all encompassing approach provides depth to the learning experience. Strong group planning and organising is key to the success of the monthly themes. Each month our classrooms are refreshed to align with the topic of the monthly theme. Books, stories and new songs are also used to reflect the monthly themes.

Example of a “Forest Life” theme

Each month a corner of our classroom is changed to reflect a monthly theme. For a “Forest Life” theme it could be transformed into a woodland setting using materials from nature and then populated with forest wildlife figurines. The elements in the scene can serve to introduce new vocabulary and be used by the children, stimulating their creative play. Over the course of the month, children will be encouraged to add to the woodland scene by bringing in objects that they find in the woods and by decorating the area with artwork they produce during the month.

Outside Play

Outdoor play is a big part of our program as it allows children to develop on a social, physical and imaginative level that nourishes a child’s mind, body, and spirit.

In our outdoor area, children will have the opportunity to engage with our large-scale outdoor board games (like tic-tac-toe, twister, and hopscotch), let their imaginations soar in our beautiful tree house, and learn balance and strategy in our obstacle course. We also have plenty more material to keep them active and engaged in our beautiful nature inspire space, including chalk boards for the creation of beautiful artwork.