The Tree Room
3 & 4 Years
Children 3 to 4 years old make up our happy Tree Room. Social awareness is an important development for children this age. During play, children learn to respect and be considerate of others, to share, to listen and follow directions, and to help clean up after play time is over.
In the Tree Room, children have abundant opportunities to increase their language and communication skills through music, story time, and in small groups with their teachers who are specially trained to lead readiness activities for this age group.
Our Lower School play-based curriculum is uniquely designed to provide students with a multi-sensory, inquiry based learning experience which draws from an eclectic blend of the best educational practices. Those include:
- Traditional Montessori
- Whole Language
- Handwriting Without Tears
- Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes
- Reggio Emilia Inspired techniques
Children have a natural love of shape, color, pattern and texture. All children enjoy the creative manipulation of materials. When children are encouraged to experiment with a wide variety of media under the guidance of an effective teacher they can benefit from increased self esteem and joy of self expression as well as a wide variety of other cognitive, physical, emotional and social skills.
- Hand eye coordination and fine motor development
- Perceptual and discrimination skills
- Tactile and kinesthetic awareness
- Creative expressions
- Self esteem
Our Lower School Creative Movement Program is rooted in the belief that learning through the arts not only educates students by elevates them to a deeper awareness of themselves and of the world around them. Children work together during each stage class dancing, pretending, singing, sharing, and learning the value of teamwork!
Lower School Stage classes are formatted to help students explore the basic four elements of dance. Whenever a person moves, the body uses space, force, and time. The children enjoy participating in the different lessons designed to help them discover the exciting possibilities inherent in the combination of these elements.
Each week the stages become an indoor playground for your child's imagination as they dramatize, pretend, and 'become' everything from shy sea creatures silently watching the sunlight glitter on the waves as they glide gracefully through water, to determined ducklings braving navigating their way out from inside their shells, eager to see the world for the first time! We dance through the seasons, paint our favorite colors on the surface of the moon, help frowning frogs find friends, and even drive our cars (with caution of course!) to some delightfully dear destinations.
The Mat Room
The early childhood years are a critical time for the development of physical skills. At Sundance our developmentally appropriate Mat Room program is designed to help children build a foundation of basic gross motor skills (throwing, catching, kicking, balancing, skipping, galloping, etc.). These skills are invaluable lifetime tools that children need and use to successfully participate in regular physical activity. Our main goal is to help children strengthen the sense of what they can do and to challenge them to do even more!
The primary goal of early music education is to develop the ability to perform, to create, to listen to music with understanding and most of all develop a passion for music. At Sundance our students will develop the ability to sing on tune and tap out and recognize the beat or rhythm to a song. Similar to learning a language, musical ability develops during the first five years of a child’s life.
- To overcome inhibition when speaking another language
- To be eager to participate in class
- To further develop listening and understanding skills
- The children learn to speak and interact by singing traditional Spanish songs
- To become aware of other cultures and traditions