3-5 Year Olds

Butterflies, Penguins & Tigers

Multi-age groupings for our three- to five-year-olds provide leadership opportunities for all children, make it easier to differentiate for challenges or early cognitive spikes, facilitate continuous progress at an individual’s pace, benefit from powerful peer modeling, and provide meaningful, engaged learning. Children spend two years with the same teaching team and in the same classroom.

There are three groups of children. In each group maximum 18 students are guided by two qualified and caring full-time teachers.

They are housed in the historic villa at Goetheallee 18 in Dresden-Blasewitz.

To start in these groups, children need be 3 by 30th September. Start is preferably at the beginning of the school year but entering the preschool is also possible throughout the year.

English is the predominant language of communication. German is also introduced through songs, stories and other resources.

Programme

In our Preschool we follow the transdisciplinary and inquiry-based Primary Years Programme (PYP) of the International Baccalaureate Organisation starting at age 3. At this level, inquiry is most often play-based, capitalizing on young children’s natural inclination to explore and make sense of their world.

Students inquire into, and learn about, globally significant issues in the context of units of inquiry, each of which addresses a central idea relevant to a particular transdisciplinary theme. The PYP uses a constructivist approach to help children make meaning of their lives and the world around them. Each unit of inquiry also includes a focus on skills and attributes from the Learner Profile, PYP Attitudes, and PYP Transdisciplinary Skills to be taught within the context of the unit whenever possible, and as stand-alone when not. 

We value flexibility in expectations about when and how children acquire certain competencies which means we meet each child where s/he is at and support development to the next level.

We are offering a rich program for your child that lays the foundations for all future learning.

Read more about the Preschool Programme

Assessment

Four tools for reporting on children’s development are parent conferences, student portfolios, yearly or semester reports, and student-led conferences. A developmental progress report is given in June to parents of children 3 to 5.

Initial Parent-Teacher-Conference

Before the child starts, transition plan developed, orientation for parents, goal setting

Fall Conference

Reflection on transition; teacher shares development progress

Spring Conference

Students share their portfolios with parents and teach their parents about what they are learning

Transition

During initial interviews (admissions and first meeting with teachers), parents are asked about their own as well as their child(ren)’s transitions.

In the first parent-teacher conference in the preschool, one of the goals is to create the transition plan for new children in partnership with the parents. Each transition plan is unique to the individual needs of the child, and the plan must be flexible to accommodate those needs.

Student transitions may include beginning with the parent in class or in house, half-day attendance, or early pick up.

A typical day

7:30 - 8:45 Morning Care
8:45 - 9:00 Singing
Starting at 9:00 Morning Circle
  Center and small-group instructional time connected to the current unit of inquiry
  outdoor play time
  Two 40-min sports period per week
11:30 Lunch
14:30 Library Lesson (every other week)
Story time / Sleeping  
Transition / Snack  
15:20 (Tues 14:30) Dismissal or After School Care until 18:00

When possible, the preschool teachers plan age-appropriate field trips or guest speakers to provide students with first-hand, personal experiences. Such trips in the past included a fire station, science lab, hospital, restaurant, Leo Mini Cup, Dresden Zoo, and the public library.

Class Websites

Each preschool class has a web page that is regularly revised with weekly photos and descriptions of learning and events of the week. There is also timely information from the office, a monthly parenting blog, and general information for parents. Parents are expected to visit the web page with their children once a week. This is an opportunity for the parent and child to speak in their mother tongue language about what is happening in the classroom.

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