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Preschool Program

3 to 5 years

Boosting children’s curiosity and critical learning skills while having fun!

With an emphasis on social-emotional development and problem-solving skills, children at Big and Tiny engage in hands-on, meaningful learning experiences that promote critical thinking, creative solutions, and collaboration. Children’s curiosity is combined with a guided investigative approach to immerse children in the process and joy for learning and discovery.

Program Objectives

Teaching students how to think critically

Through inquiry-based learning, students build their comprehension, critical thinking, and communication skills. Continuous use of their cognitive skills helps not only in class, but in day-to-day life. Our pedagogy allows young learners to take ownership of their learning, engage with the material and deepen their understanding of topics. With constant, individualized support from their teachers, students explore and discover to develop greater mastery of skills and concepts.

  • Understanding the relationships between ideas, to grasp the process of cause and effect and improving their analytical skills

  • Following the Inquiry-based learning steps: Observe, question, investigate, conclude, share and reflect

  • Developing problem-solving skills and critical thinking

  • Matching, comparing, sorting, and organizing skills

Cognitive Development

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At this age, learners’ vocabulary expands quickly. Our goal is to help children solve problems and learn fundamental concepts. Through open-ended questions and visual thinking strategies, children develop conversational skills, their own ideas, and opinions as well as their own narratives and explanations.

  • Increasing their vocabulary through the use of longer and more complex sentences

  • Having conversations with each other through a variety of activities

  • Responding to open-ended questions about their observations, actions, interests, events, or feelings

  • Recognizing letters and some words

  • Developing their writing skills

  • Sharing stories about their own personal experiences

  • Asking questions to foster learning

Language
& Communication

With an emphasis on social emotional development, students at Big and Tiny will form long lasting friendships, learn to communicate emotions, and to deal with challenges. Strong, positive relationships will allow children to develop trust, empathy, compassion and understanding the emotions of others. 

  • Taking turns in conversations and games

  • Showing affection, empathy and a wide range of emotions

  • Identifying and expressing feelings

  • Cooperating and playing with other children

  • Developing autonomy and independence

Social-Emotional
Growth

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Cognitive Development

Fine & Gross Motor
Skill Development

Preschoolers at Big and Tiny will continue to develop gross motor skills and larger and stronger muscles through multiple activities including yoga, dance, walking, running, climbing and balance. Children refine fine motor skills and improve their artistic and writing abilities. Continued refinement of fine motor skills, such as being able to unbutton or button clothing without help.

  • Improving artistic abilities, such as drawing, painting, sculpting and other art forms

  • Drawing large letters and numbers

  • Manipulating a wide range of supplies and materials to create art projects

  • Developing more independence in their daily activities (dressing for instance)

A day in Preschool

Arrival

When children first arrive at Big and Tiny, they store their belongings in their cubby, remove their shoes, say goodbye to their grown-ups for the day and greet their friends. Practicing this transition from home to school everyday helps your little one discover the excitement of healthy independence.

 

Meetings

Children gather as a whole group and review the calendar and plans for the day. This includes the job list with the responsibilities for the day. During meetings children share ideas, practice listening and taking turns. Community time often incorporates movement, songs and social-emotional practice games to help understanding the emotions of others.

Work Time  

Inspired by Reggio Emilia learning practices, students collaborate in small groups and independently on projects that are inspired by their interests. They are encouraged to explore the classroom materials, ask questions, solve problems and notice sensory details like sounds, shapes and textures. It is a time for self-discovery where they begin to learn more about what intrigues them, develop new skills, and accomplish goals. During work time, children are given the opportunity to engage in language, sensorial, math, practical life skills art, and science projects.

Studio Classes and Art Lab

During studio classes, children engage in multiple specialty classes and enriching experiences to will help develop new skills. These include art, music & movement, science, yoga and library. 

Art is one of the many ways children express themselves and communicate their feelings. Every day children engage and experiment with different art forms and materials. We provide open-ended art activities that help children explore and use their creativity.

 

Music and movement classes are offered weekly for children to develop forging connections between their brain and their mind, body, and emotions and allows them to learn sounds and meaning of words.

 

Life Skills 

Many practical life activities are incorporated throughout the day to allow the children to understand the world around them. They learn a routine and procedure that is consistent and can be followed at home, too.

Early Literacy

Through Interactive story time, students are exposed to rich language and literacy experiences every day. These books are selected according to the topics that the children are working on. Children will become familiar with books and rhymes, repeating words and phrases from different stories, helping them grow their vocabulary and  sentences.   Curiosity is developed in the classroom through both teacher-planned and child-led activities. The children begin to incorporate letters, words, symbols and numbers into their own work. Children visit the local library regularly where they listen to new adventures, choose their own books and develop the love for literacy.

 

Mathematics

Math provocations are intentionally designed by the teachers during work time. They are usually based on student's interest and linked to the curriculum. These open ended activities allow children to investigate, explore and practice mathematical concepts and thinking.

Gross Motor

Children develop large motor functions through group games, gym activities, outdoor play, dancing, and yoga.

Nature & Community walks

Children engage in outdoor activities on a daily basis. Community walks around the neighborhood and Rockefeller Park provide students an opportunity to connect with nature in a deeper level and learn more about their surroundings.

Lunch & Snack

We provide healthy and organic lunch as snacks courtesy of little spoons. 

 

Nap and Rest

Learning and playing can be exhausting! Big and Tiny knows how important sleeping is for a young child’s growth, and development.

Dismissal

Group gathering to reflect on their work and possibilities for the next day. Time to share connections, questions and ideas.To transition to go home at the close of the day, children work together to tidy up, change their shoes, gather their belongings and say goodbye. Children are encouraged to share their various projects from the day with their grown-ups.

Program available

from coast to coast


 

The program runs Monday through Friday from 9 am to 3 pm in all our locations. 8 am to 5 pm extended day options available. 

OCEAN PARK, SANTA MONICA, LA

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BATTERY PARK, NY

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