We understand how important the early years are to both you and your child. This is a time of remarkable growth, when children are experiencing rapid development, learning new skills, and progressing steadily towards physical, intellectual, and social-emotional milestones.With that in mind, our featured The Creative Curriculum provides intentional guidance and rich experiences that build upon individual strengths and talents. With our child development professionals at their sides, children are assured of getting the care that they need, the creative learning experiences they enjoy, and the intellectually challenging opportunities they deserve.All of our classrooms are secure, nurturing environments that offer age-appropriate opportunities for exploration and discovery.
Grace Neighborhood Academy goals and objectives are guided by “The Creative Curriculum for Young Toddler’s, Two’s, Preschoolers, and School Agers.” The Creative Curriculum has been cross-walked and developed with close alignment to “The Early Learning Standards” curriculum used by PA Pre-K Counts. In addition, it has been aligned with and the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) Program Standards. To achieve our goals and objectives, Grace Neighborhood Academy will do the following:
- The staff will use Early Learning Standards Curriculum and best practices to provide opportunities to support child development.
- Implement our “Program Philosophy,” which revolves around our respect and deep belief in the value of diversity, to ensure that all families and children will be accepted regardless of race, color, religious creed, disability, ancestry, national origin, Limited English Proficiency (LEP), age or sex.
- Teachers will create individualized goals for each child. The child’s individualized goals will be based upon ongoing observation and assessments throughout the year.
- Take advantage of the natural diversity found in our center. The St. Stephens Academy program is comprised of children from diverse cultures and backgrounds from 13 months through 12 years of age. Generally, children are from Northeast Philadelphia area. Specifically, we have children who are African American, Asian, Haitian, Jamaican, West Indies, and Hispanics. To ensure that our children are aware of various cultures and ethnicities, Grace Neighborhood’s curriculum includes culture specific instruction and activities.
- Ensure that the children at Grace Neighborhood Academy will have opportunities to experience a variety of developmental activities. Grace Neighborhood Academy instructional program will develop varied experiences and a variety of activities that will explore the “Key Learning Areas” of development; additionally, these activities will be targeted to help develop gross motor skills, emotional development and creativity.
- Provide opportunities for self-initiated and teacher directed activities by using a daily schedule to facilitate the learning and growing process. We believe that by utilizing a daily schedule we help to ensure that the classroom daily activities foster intentional teaching; as opposed to simple or natural exposure to the learning goals and Key Learning Areas. An additional benefit of our daily schedule is to provide structured learning, as well as consistency.
- Continually assess classrooms to make sure that they contain age appropriate materials. St. Stephens Academy classrooms and center environment provide a wide range of materials and equipment to promote safety, new interests, new skills, and the individual needs of each child. Our classrooms contain the necessary materials and are arranged such that they provide maximum support for multiple Key Learning Areas. Our teachers, utilizing principles from “The Creative Curriculum” together with the Pennsylvania Learning Standards, seek to take a holistic approach to plan activities that while enjoyable, help to develop a well-rounded child.
- Reinforce the importance of the staff utilizing learning standards that are designed to incorporate an age-appropriate curriculum utilizing best practices and Early Learning Standard’s principles.
- Take full advantage of one of our primary resources, “The Creative Curriculum,” which is aligned with Pennsylvania Learning Standards for Early Childhood. It will be implemented to create a lesson plan that will expose children to a variety of opportunities to gain proficiency in all of the Key Learning Areas.
- Support the development of our staff. Grace Neighborhood Academy will provide opportunities and resources for the continuing professional development for our staff at every level. This support includes but is not limited to ongoing certifications, and continuing educational opportunities.
- Work closely with our families. The program believes that a child’s interests and successful development should be guided by the partnership between families and staff. To that end, our staff interacts with parents and family at every opportunity. Our parent teacher conferences are just one aspect of our partnership efforts.
- Create ongoing lines of communication and partnerships with community leaders, agencies, other childcare programs and stakeholders in the development of continuous improvement and support of our children’s educational experiences at Grace Neighborhood Academy.
- Utilize a variety of tools to assist in the ongoing assessment of our children. Some of the tools utilized are Ages & Stages, Work Sampling, and OUNCE. Further, teachers will use assessments and ongoing observation to assess a child’s interests, needs and strengths. Once an assessment is performed, the staff will utilize findings to help create goals, plan activities and individualize a curriculum and teaching strategy for each child with their parent/guardian’s assistance.
- Continually strive to provide an environment that is appropriate for children of diverse needs. Where appropriate, we will make referrals to external resources when a child requires additional assistance to reach their full potential for their stage of development.
By adhering to our guiding principles and by following our Program Philosophy, we believe Grace Neighborhood Academy goals and objectives will be met, resulting in an outstanding learning environment for our children.
Research Based Curriculum
The Creative Curriculum is not only research-based, they’re research-proven—validated and shown to be effective by extensive research conducted by independent researchers. From multi-year efficacy studies to peer-reviewed journal articles and research foundation papers, our vast body of research helps prove that you can trust our products to help you deliver positive outcomes for all children.
The Creative Curriculum® for Preschool
- Comparing Child Outcomes: Examining the Impact of The Creative Curriculum® for Preschool (PDF)
- Linking Curriculum and Assessment: The Creative Curriculum® for Preschool and Teaching Strategies GOLD® (PDF)
- Effectiveness Study: The Creative Curriculum® for Preschool (PDF)
- The Creative Curriculum for Preschool: Executive Function (PDF)
- The Creative Curriculum for Preschool: Letter Knowledge (PDF)
- The Creative Curriculum for Preschool: Phonological Awareness (PDF)
- The Importance of the Assessment Cycle inThe Creative Curriculum® for Preschool(PDF)
Research Foundation Papers
- The Creative Curriculum® (PDF)
- Language and Literacy (PDF)
- Mathematics at Teaching Strategies (PDF)
- The Creative Curriculum for Preschool: Research Foundation English- and Dual-Language Learners (PDF)
List of Supplemental Resources (attached as Our Curriculum Supplemental Resources)
Sample Lesson Plan (PDF)