The nursery school “Curriculum” is at the centre of the Three Year Syllabus (Piano Triennale dell’Offerta Formativa) of Saint Denis School.
This Syllabus is based on the European key areas of knowledge in education and are in accordance with the Italian Ministry of Education’s 2012 Indications, law n. 107/2015. This refers to personal, social, local and general needs and to pedagogic, psychologic and neuroscientific theories such those of Piaget, Bruner, Montessori, Visalberghi, De Bartolomeis, Gardner and Goleman.
Saint Denis School’s Three Year Syllabus for the academic years from 2016 to 2019 is available from the Ministry of Public Education (Ministero della Pubblica Istruzione) internet site in the area dedicated to “Scuola in Chiaro”.
The daily activities for pupils follow the guidelines indicated in the “fields of experience” for nursery schools:
developing awareness of yourself and others
expressive arts (images, sounds, colours)
communication and language
understanding of the world
living things, objects and phenomena
Teachers’ choices of activities and when and how they are developed are based on learning contents, methods, organization and assessment. In particular, teachers observe:
· children in their first weeks of school ;
· their emotional attachments and relationships;
· their rhythm and speed of learning;
· their obvious interests and preferences;
· their evolution towards independence;
· their degree of learning of the first skills.
Teaching staff meet regularly to discuss progress in the Curriculum. Through careful planning and assessment they help each individual pupil make progress at every learning stage. Teachers also complete and share with each family “Systematic Observations of the pupil” and reports on their progress, through regular teacher-parents meetings.
Throughout the year, every child’s work is collected and placed into a work folder. This way teachers may monitor and refer back to each child’s learning path and progress.
Some of the activities children participate in at the nursery school are:
- practical play activities in English (from the first year of nursery school) and French (from the preschool class)
- activities stimulating creativity, expression and manipulation of materials
- musical activities
- free play and guided play-time
- body language*
- preparing for national celebrations (example Easter, Christmas..)
- school trips, trips to exhibitions and shows
- preschool activities (early literacy skills, early writing skills, numeracy and early maths)
*Body language is one of various activities the children participate in at nursery school. Children learn about their bodies and the space around them. Using hoops, balls, cubes, ribbons and tubes where they walk, run, jump, crawl, roll and slide along, children can experiment with their own bodies, developing control and coordination alongside spatial awareness. They will learn about body parts and how to control their movements. They will become more self-confident of physical contact with others in their school environment while feeling secure.