Junior Kindergarten students are immersed in a literacy-rich learning environment that allows for extensive pre-reading and vocabulary development. Students make connections between their speaking, reading, writing and listening skills by engaging with learning manipulatives like loose and natural parts or handmade props, while answering questions like “What story lives here?” or “What can you create?” Often, students will come up with the main character and problem of stories or act out familiar texts, which helps them in learning about themselves and the world around them.
Numeracy, often misunderstood as only being associated with mathematics, is the ability and intention to apply mathematical concepts and problem solving skills across various areas of learning. When students are given real-life cases, they can apply their mathematical concepts and skills to gain transferable learning experiences. In Junior Kindergarten, students learn through purposeful play. Students use their mathematical thinking, like reasoning and describing, while exploring materials and subjects, like patterns in seasonal changes or how snow drifts in a snow globe. By carefully utilizing their innate way of being and pairing it with intentional learning activities students combine play-based learning with mathematical ideas and strategies.
Cross Curricular learning encourages students to engage with material from a variety of viewpoints and to see the relationships between different subject areas. This learning journey begins in Junior Kindergarten, where students participate in guided learning opportunities that allow for students to make connections to their prior knowledge. For example, a student’s love of animals and colouring can allow for students to use their visual arts skills while delving into science, as they investigate and analyze local plants and animals. Building upon those connections forms a deeper and authentic understanding of learning.