Infant class (0-2 years of age)
Curriculum and Aims
Infancy is a very sensitive and fragile period in human development, signaling rapid progress in all areas (physical, cognitive, linguistic, emotional and social).
When first joining the School, the child will experience separation from his mother. For this reason our primary concern is just to develop a trusting relationship with its teacher. This link is created as the teacher meets the everyday needs of the infant, focusing on emotional and physical communication which has been developed since the very first moments of the infant’s life. For the child to flourish, it needs not only love, peace and security, but also the ability to communicate with words.
Infants make no distinction between play and learning. They learn through everything they interact with and find interesting, aided by adults who care for them and whom they can trust. What they need to develop physically, cognitively, linguistically and emotionally is an environment rich in stimuli. The mind at this age is sensory kinetic, that is to say based on movements the baby makes with its body and direct contact with its immediate environment.
Hence the Infant Class is filled with numerous fun toys ready and waiting for when all the children are well-rested, well-fed and freshly cleaned. The teacher organizes activities, selecting toys (stimuli) that appeal to as many sensory pathways as possible, thus enhancing development, as these toys are aimed slightly above what has been assimilated by the infant until now. Doing this gives them the ability to freely handle these objects and encourage them to work them out for themselves, thereby reaching some interesting results.
The teacher constantly hones listening and observation skills, as they are important elements for the ability to concentrate. And, of course, explains everything that is done both by the infant and herself, in words.
English is integrated as a language of communication throughout the school on a daily basis. The basic idea is to also use English in every aspect of the child’s school life, from organised activities through playtime to mealtimes. Our English teacher, Mrs. Genine Lowe, assists our existing educators with the curriculum already in place, but communicates solely in English. Thus a need for real every day communication is created, which in turn leads to an effortless assimilation and use of English. The theory of the programme is simple: just as a child growing up in a bilingual family develops a natural feel for both languages, similarly our pupils pick up English in a non-intrusive and natural way. Simply put, we hear, we take it in, and then we talk.