At SCOPE Academy, we promise that every child will receive programming that entails the following components:

Projects that Engage:

Students engaged in a project

Our program allows children to guide their own learning through opportunities that encompass their interest and leads to engagement and in-depth learning. Staff and parents observe student’s approaches to learning, paying close attention to what motivates each child to be enthusiastic and engaged in their learning. Children's engagement is measured by the approaches of learning that has been defined by current research and includes levels of attention, persistence, flexibility, self-regulation, and learning behaviors (Hyson, 20071). Documentation collected helps the instructional team to continually make revisions that shape the environment and materials available to meet children’s needs and interest.

Motivation to Learn:

Student engaged in writting

Motivation to learn is fostered by ensuring children are able to engage in self-directed exploration where we serve as facilitators instead of directly teaching. Children taking charge of their own learning activates their positive emotions, motivation, and engaged actions. It is our role to know each child and to understand their approaches to learning and individual needs in order to adapt the curriculum in a way that will optimize each individual’s motivation and engagement in their own learning. Appreciating motivation for learning empowers children to be leaders in the learning process where they are able to generalize skills and ideas and utilize what they have learned. Our educational practices preserve and nurture each child’s enthusiasm for learning because they are intrinsically motivated to learn through engagement in learning opportunities that are meaningful and relevant to their everyday life. Our high interest setting ensures that every child is safe to show enthusiasm and confidence in learning in a way that allows them to take risks that lead to discovery, exploration, and successful understanding and development. Children who leave our educational setting will take with them a sustained desire to continue their own learning because they were engaged actively, not passively, in the learning process.

Multi-Language Emersion and Global Awareness:

Students explore locations around the globe

Meaningful connections to language and cultures around the globe are a natural part of the core curriculum. We recognize that research tells us that preparing children with 21st century skills must include instilling a sense of globalization in our children and exposing them to many languages. Research continues to demonstrate that Spanish and Mandarin are vital to 21st century skills and early exposure to multi language experiences provide children with a foundation for later educational success by promoting 21st century skills to understand and address global issues; Learning from and working collaboratively with individuals representing diverse cultures, religions and lifestyles in a spirit of mutual respect and open dialogue in personal, work and community context, promoting the study of non-English language as a tool for understanding other nations and cultures, applying appropriate 21st century skills to function as a productive contributor within an organizational setting (A Report and Mile Guide for 21st Century Skills: P21.org). We are building on community resources to do what we can to make language learning real-life and meaningful and incorporated into everyday experiences in our program. Daily use of the languages of Mandarin and Spanish are embedded into each learning day naturally where staff interchanges the languages and students respond in the same manner. Parents and extended families are encouraged to support the languages at home by being provided handouts of all new words and phonetic pronunciations and meanings, audio references are available on our website for families to reference as they listen to pronunciations as well as see their clips of their children using the language during the school day. It is our goal to start children on their path as lifelong learners and 21st century global citizens. Throughout the school year, there will be many opportunities with languages and cultures to help us relate to people globally and give children access to our new interrelated world. Through the use of technology, children in our program will have the opportunity to connect with children across boundaries. We want to support our children to become helping participants in their community and the world around them. We are working on meaningful projects and activities for them to befriend others around the globe with opportunities to share work, exchange stories and experiences and support one another.

Social Emotional Growth:

Student explore Play-Doh

Our learning environment is based around children's interest and brings children together in a way that builds confidence, self-esteem, and social interaction that fosters relationships and social awareness. It is our focus to help children gain a foundation that builds social skills for life. We know from current research and we believe that social emotional growth is an indicator for school readiness and educational success and is the key to building pro-social behaviors (Pianta, Cox & Snow, 20073) . We want our program to provide children with overall growth and development that will support their lifelong learning efforts.

Curiosity:

The classroom is children’s canvas for developing their capacity to explore, discover, empower and imagine. We are careful that our focus is never narrowed to channel children's curiosity but to offer a learning environment that invites curiosity without limits.

Celebration of Success:

Student displays his work

Our program takes every opportunity to celebrate the success of each child. Traditional portfolios are organized and kept throughout the year for students and families to review and spotlight original work and ongoing progress. We believe every child should be honored for the work they do and their leadership and unique work should be celebrated and shared. We take every opportunity to highlight children's accomplishments through community events into our monthly program newsletters. Also an online progress report system is in place for each child. Teachers input data weekly and list all of the week’s assignments that target the week’s objectives and outcomes. Parents may view the progress data at any time as a way to stay informed of their child's progress. Also report cards and conferences follow our school schedule as reflected on the school calendar.

Trust Children to Succeed:

Our philosophy of teaching is built upon our trust that children will succeed. The environment is always considerate of providing opportunities where children are able to guide their own learning, as we demonstrate our belief in them and their capabilities. There is a balance of adult support and child direction throughout the day that supports and builds trust to succeed. We consciously provide the opportunities, means, and the resources to trust children will succeed by focusing on their interests and enthusiasm. Our emphasis is on valuing the children’s contribution to each other’s learning through teacher facilitation of child choice and child directed learning; making them aware of the trust which leads to more risk taking on each child's part. We believe that our curriculum has integrity and meaningfully builds necessary skills and does not waste children's time. Our assessments match what we are teaching and measuring to always monitor individual student achievement and to close learning gaps.

Nutrition for Life:

Students exploring nutritional food

Our curriculum focuses on strengthening children's mind, body and spirit and by focusing on good nutrition skills, we are building children's capacity for life long healthy practices. Exposing children to healthy foods through involving them in cooking with nutritional ingredients as they prepare their own daily snacks and experiment with foods in the cooking center is a powerful avenue to instilling nutritional awareness in our children and 21st century content. Children will be provided opportunities to create their own recipes, cookbooks, and other culinary creations which help them find the power in a nutritious lifestyle. We have a wonderful cooking center where children can work with food, herbs, utensils, and ingredients that were grown in our own school garden. Daily opportunities for gross motor activities inside and out of the school building are offered daily to support nutrition and health and wellness in our children.

High Academic Expectations/Experiences:

Power for lifelong learning comes from high academic expectations and experiences. Vast exposure within the environment promotes thinking and acquiring of content and new information and skills. Students are taught that there is no right way to approach something and they are encouraged to build their capacity to structure relevant to them for meaning. Alignment comes from the experiences we provide that embed the academic content standards in a meaningful learning context for children.

Cognitive Connections:

Students graphing data they collected

We pride ourselves on understanding how children approach learning in order to ensure that the opportunities provided to children supports their learning and development. We focus on a metacognitive approach to our instruction in which students are taught to think deliberately about how they are learning can help students take control of their own learning, monitor their own progress and improve their own achievement. Cognitive connections are supported through our comprehensive curriculum that feeds into all the academic and developmental domains and supports multiple ways to engage children in developing key concepts and skills.

Integrated Technology:

Students using the computers

Our school is designed to empower and foster learning and development in young children through 21st century skills with technology applications that build new and creative means of expression. Each classroom has their own classroom blog with student pages that keeps current with their work for families to view. Teachers post weekly information, exciting videos of their children's projects, reading success, songs, and more. The blogs contain a multi-language section where families can access language being introduced to support th languages that their children are using in schools. We aim to increase family's use and understanding of technology tools and learning skills through our website and encouraging them to participate and contribute to the site with their children. Weaving 21st century interdisciplinary themes into learning and innovation skills will prepare children for life and varied environments where they can exhibit a range of functional and critical thinking skills. Children engage each other through technology in realistic and meaningful opportunities to share and collaborate on original work with peers from other early learning programs. Through the use of wireless webcam technology and digital cameras children come together through these avenues to engage in peer-to-peer interaction. This electronic means of cooperation provides children with the opportunity to engage in a broad and diverse learning community as they collaborate and share their work. The increased exposure and varied modes of technology available will provide opportunities for taking classrooms where ideas can be exchanged and interaction of peers is not limited by boundaries. Our focus on technology in this way provides students with feedback and discussion on their work and prompts them to reflect, revisit, and continually refine their experiences and creations.

Environmental Efforts:

An important day to day focus at our program is a conscious effort to promote higher level thinking skills that includes "Thinking Green." Our school parking lost has a recycle container for families to drop off materials to join in the "Go Green" effort. Students in the classroom are continually seeking out ways to reuse and recycle materials all around them. The concept of recycling is introduced at the beginning of the school year when children are taught how to sort materials and look for symbols on plastics and other materials that signal the children about recyclable materials. Recyclable materials are common place and reused throughout all the learning centers. It is a natural part of the learning day for students to create, design, and produce unique and original art, inventions, architecture, and varied models from materials that they have recycled. We strive to make recycling and environmental awareness an unspoken and automatic behavior in our students. We see them helping their generation move away from a disposable society and problem solving new ways to think about caring for the environment.

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