Preschool: PK3, PK4, K
At the Preschool level, Stuart Hall is a place that focuses on learning through discovery--with hands-on experiences that foster a love for learning. We emphasize opportunities for emotional and social development through our center-based, thematic units, which allow the boys to work both collaboratively with their peers and in small groups with great teacher-to-student ratios. With two teachers in each classroom, we are able to work on pre-academic skills while identifying and addressing early strengths and challenges in each boy’s learning profile through differentiated instruction.
The Pre-Kindergarten curriculum offers a multi-sensory program geared to the developmental needs of all children. Attention is given to motor development in the classroom through the implementation of manipulatives, easel painting, coloring, cutting, pasting, and other fine motor experiences. Thematic units are explored throughout the year, helping to develop language and promote self-expression. All classes provide a full academic day in a print-rich environment with varied learning experiences (a half-day program is available for PK3). Teachers give opportunities for self-directed learning, fostering independence and problem solving skills. All of our programs are enriched through specialization classes in religion, art, library, music, and physical education. Spanish is offered to PK4 and French in Kindergarten.
- The main goals of Preschool Religion are to teach the boys about the great love that Jesus has for them, and that each of them has been uniquely created by God. We do this through telling and acting out Gospel stories, playing fun games that teach meaningful lessons, and providing many related “attention getters” to keep engagement high. We aim to concretize their experience of God as much as possible. Young children have a special connection with the natural world, and we allow them the freedom to explore and wonder about it. Finally, we incorporate guided meditation where the boys encounter Jesus in their everyday lives, in hope that they will build a personal friendship with Him.
- Preschool physical education concentrates on developing gross motor skills, rhythm, and coordination through such activities as running, jumping, skipping, hopping, and sliding. Fundamental movement patterns such as throwing and catching, dribbling, catching and fleeing, and striking are developed. Attention is given to providing the maximum amount of movement per class period. Music is often used as a motivational technique. A variety of activities is offered, and all students are included in every activity.
- The Music program offers a variety of opportunities to suit the talent and abilities of students of all ages. Our Preschool students learn the foundations of music from their first day of class with singing and clapping games, as well as an introduction to the various families that make up the orchestra. Students can recognize instruments by sight and sound, as well as understanding which family they come from. Throughout the entire music curriculum, students continue to sing and perform for special programs.
- Library classes begin with PK3 and continue through our boys time here at Stuart Hall. The boys begin to check out books in PK4. There is a curriculum of library skills that begins in PK3 with basic parts of a book, care of books and information about who an author and illustrator are. Visiting authors on campus bring the book writing process to life for the students. Beginning in Kindergarten, the boys are introduced to various sources of information and begin to determine how each resource is best used. The curriculum includes a portion of library class when the boys are read aloud to throughout their time at Stuart Hall.
- Basic elements of art are taught through age-appropriate art projects that also introduce as much art history as possible. Many different types of media are used in class, such as clay, paint, papier maché, pastels, and drawing.
- Life Skills are taught PK4-7th Grade using the Second Step Program. The program has four core areas: empathy training, impulse control, anger management, and problem solving. The school counselor works closely with the parents, teachers and administrators to assist all students to progress and prosper.
- The Preschool uses technology in various ways to enhance our curriculum. Computers and iPads can be found in every classroom. In the Preschool, iPads are used as a listening center where boys can hear stories read aloud and practice tracking words. There are also data projectors and smart boards in every classroom Kindergarten through Seventh Grade. The boys attend a formal computer class beginning in Kindergarten.