Earth Day is every day at The International Preschools! Of course, during the month of April, celebrating Earth Day becomes a focused portion of our play-based learning curriculum. Every year the teachers and students at IPS commemorate this day with a rich, impressive, and varied curriculum.
Many classes embarked on their Earth Day-related units by planting. Lima beans and grass seeds were popular plants among the classrooms, and are great choices: both sprout quickly, allowing for the children to witness the growth process. Children learned about the parts of a plant (i.e. stems, leaves, roots) and what is needed for seeds to grow (sunlight, water, soil). Then, via hands-on activities (daily plant watering, placement of plants on the windowsill for adequate light), students assist the plants by giving them what they need!
The International Preschools is closed this week for spring break. Please enjoy some photos from across our three locations, displaying the play-based learning experiences of our preschoolers during the months of February and March. Be sure to visit the blog next week for a brand-new post. Have a great vacation!
Our 45th Street and 86th Street locations are closed this week for spring break, and our 76th Street location will join them next week! In lieu of our usual blog posts, here is a peek into the classrooms at The International Preschools during the months of February and March. More photos to come!
The topics of love, friendship, and being kind are underlying themes throughout every school year at The International Preschools. In February, the students at The International Preschools bring these concepts to the forefront of their learning by celebrating Valentine’s Day.
The teachers at all three locations approached this subject in ways that were both similar and unique. Colors commonly associated with Valentine’s Day (red, pink, purple) popped up in many classrooms. In fact, many of our Red Rooms (2s) used this opportunity to begin their color units. Children were invited to wear red, pink, and purple to school on Valentine’s Day, and some classes also held a show-and-share of red items. The “heart” shape was also used as a symbol of Valentine’s Day and love; in one classroom, students learned about the heart muscle and became versed in how to take their own pulses!
To further the concept of friendship and working together, many students participated in whole-group projects such as collaborative collages to promote the idea of functioning as a team. Many classroom writing centers provided older children with the tools to make their own valentines, including word boxes (with Valentine’s Day-related words and phrases for children to reproduce, such as “I Love You”), markers, crayons, pencils, paper, and scissors. This type of open-ended activity allows for students to work at their own ability level, the common goal being that the “process” is more important than the final “product, thereby reinforcing the school learning through play philosophy.
Small group and whole group discussions are important in our preschoolers’ learning. Many classrooms discussed ways that we can express our love and friendship to our families and peers. Children came up with a variety of answers as to how to do this, ranging from “giving hugs” to “playing with friends.”
Below is a list of love-and-friendship-themed books that various classes have read at school:
Clifford, I Love You by Norman Bridwell
The Day It Rained Hearts by Felicia Bond
Biscuit’s Valentine’s Day by Alyssa Satin Capucilli
Heart Prints by P.K. Hallinan
Love is You and Me by Monica Sheehan
We Love Each Other by Yusuke Yonezu
Love by Eric Carle
Hugs From Pearl by Paul Schmid
The ‘I Love You’ Book by Todd Parr
Clifford’s First Valentine by Norman Bridwell
We at The International Preschools wish you and your family a very Happy Valentine’s Day!
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Each year, The International Preschools’ community celebrates the milestone recipients of the school’s faculty and administration. Staff members who have worked at The International Preschools for five, ten, fifteen, twenty years and beyond are honored at our annual Spring Benefit in April. They are also recognized with a special luncheon and gift to commemorate their commitment and dedication to our school and its community. Continue reading →
November is in full swing, and the oldest students at The International Preschools are learning about a wide variety of fall-related topics. This week, we will take a look at the fall themes inside the Pre-K (4 years old) and Junior K (4/5 years old) classes at The International Preschools.
At The International Preschools, play-based learning is used to help students acquire a love of learning. This week, we will take a look at how our youngest students in the Crèche (1.5-2-year olds) and Red Rooms (2-year olds) explore the season of fall via thematic units and play-based learning.
Songs and books are an effective way to explore classroom themes and expose young children to new vocabulary. The classes at 76th Street used real pumpkins to act out the story of the “five little pumpkins.” Here, the children practiced counting with correspondence and provided another visual cue for storytelling. Some fall books that were read in the classrooms were Find a Pumpkin by Tad Hills, Five Little Pumpkins by Iris Von Rynback, Apples and Pumpkins by Anne Rockwell, and Clifford’s First Halloween by Norman Bridwell.
The month of November truly reflects the season of fall here in New York City. The weather is noticeably cooler, the leaves on the trees have changed colors, and with the recent celebration of Halloween, fall finally feels upon us. At The International Preschools, fall, food, families, and Thanksgiving are the topics that we focus on within the classrooms from late October through November. The blog posts over the next few weeks will focus on how these themes are implemented into the classrooms. This week, we will take a look at Halloween and the overall theme of fall in the Green Rooms (3 year olds) at all three locations….
Happy United Nations Day! Our UN Day celebrations have been an annual tradition at The International Preschools since the founding of the school in 1963. The themes of peace, friendship, and acceptance run through the 2s, 3s, Pre-K, and Junior K classes at all three locations during this time of year. Here is a window into some of the classrooms for you to see the fun and various way students are preparing to celebrate this unique tradition.
The International Preschools Blog is an opportunity to journey into the school's classrooms. Here you will find information about play-based education, diversity, classroom themes; all the things that make learning joyful and fun at one of the best preschools in New York City.