Learning in La Jolla Country Day School’s (LJCDS) Kindergarten happens both inside and outside of the classroom. Located within the Lower School, the kindergarten is safe and secure with its own gated entrance and parking lot. The 8,000-square-foot kindergarten includes a specially designed playground and state-of-the-art classrooms. The classrooms are specifically designed to meet the needs of young students and boast a LEED certification (a nationally recognized "green" certification).
Inside the classroom students use a variety of resources:
Educational games and puzzles
Individual classroom libraries
A variety of art materials
Teachers incorporate large group, small group and individual instruction, while giving students ample time for indoor and outdoor play. This approach promotes each child’s cognitive, social and emotional development while fostering a sense of independence, responsibility and accountability for one’s own learning.
Beyond the classroom, students participate in field trips, learn from guest speakers, and engage in community service.
Experiential learning shapes every aspect of LJCDS's Kindergarten curriculum. Individualized reading instruction challenges learners at their own level and at their own pace. Hands-on science experiments, a broad-based math curriculum using manipulatives and daily physical education enhance motor skills.
Character education plays an integral role in the curriculum. Teachers model values and behaviors as students learn lessons from formal and informal character education experiences. LJCDS’s Kindergarten equips students with the skills to recognize emotions and appropriately act and react in social situations.
In addition, students explore the concepts of citizenship and diversity through a global education component within the social sciences curriculum. Twice weekly Spanish immersion instruction makes LJCDS's Kindergarten curriculum truly unique.
LJCDS's experienced, degreed kindergarten faculty sets the stage for learning and brings the curriculum to life. One lead and one associate teacher in each classroom work closely together to facilitate learning, promote accountability and model values and behaviors. Classrooms average a low 1:10 teacher-to-student ratio.
In addition, teachers from each classroom collaborate to design curriculum and create student experiences. Teachers are encouraged to attend conferences, identify the most up-to-date materials and best practices, and share discoveries with their colleagues.
LJCDS’s kindergarten faculty work as a team within each classroom and across the entire grade level.