Starfish & Penguins
During the 3- to 4-year-old year a vast amount of development takes place. The year starts off slowly to allow the little ones to adjust to their new school. The first term is spent settling the children, and making them feel loved and secure in their new school environment. A lot of free play takes place, during which the children will form friendships and learn through exploration.
Emphasis is placed on their EQ (emotional intelligence) development. We spend time teaching the little ones how to play with friends, how to share, the importance of kindness, and how to use language to solve problems. Building self-confidence and creating a positive self-image is the next crucial step.
Structure and routine are vital for the Starfish and Penguins, and each day follows the same format. We start with a morning ring, followed by art and creative play. After snack time, the children play in the big garden, and they finish the day back inside for construction and quiet play. Each day concludes with storytime.
Every conversation – whether chatting to friends or listening to a teacher – helps the little ones develop their language skills. Stories teach them new vocabulary, rhyming words, and sentence structure. Constantiaberg Pre-Primary is a school full of games and equipment that make language development fun and stimulating. The children love singing new songs each morning, which further develops their language.
Mathematical concepts are taught at ring time, and our focus is to build a strong concrete understanding of numbers. The Starfish and Penguins work with geometric shapes such as triangles, squares, circles and rectangles. They learn how to construct simple patterns through block construction and threading activities. Simple graphs are introduced when conducting a class census on favorite pets or foods. We play many sorting games using various materials, and puzzles are always available in the classroom.
Fine motor activities are a vital part of our school day. Our structured art activities allow the children to work with crayons, chalk, paintbrushes, glue, and kokis. A lot of tearing and cutting activities take place, allowing the children to develop strength in their hands and fingers. We also encourage free art activities to stimulate creativity.
Strong bodies are very important for formal learning. We work on the little ones’ core strength to enable them to sit and work for longer periods of time as they get older. Morning rings are always very active, with a lot of movement, and our outside days allow for plenty of physical exercise. The children also delight in participating in our Game Changers programme weekly.
The 3- to 4-year olds are the best scientists, because they are constantly exploring. Natural materials fascinate them. Our nature and sensory tables provide continuous stimulation for these enquiring minds.