All McDowell County Universal Pre-K classrooms utilize the Creative Curriculum which is aligned to the West Virginia Early Learning Standards and Head Start Performance Standards. The Creative Curriculum is a scientifically research- based program created to enhance physical, cognitive, social, emotional, and language development.
Children learn in each interest area through play. Play is how children naturally learn and is as vital to a child’s development as is eating and sleeping. Play stimulates brain growth in children at the most critical time in their development.
When children are playing, they are not only learning fundamental concepts that are the basis for later academic learning, but they're also learning social skills. Building with blocks, for example, is a math experience that helps them develop concepts of shape, size, length and location. In the art area, when they're mixing colors, they're learning eye-hand coordination and exercising their imagination and creativity.
Even if children are outside bouncing a ball, children are learning! They're learning to count, learning about shapes and colors. They're realizing that their bodies are developing, and most importantly, that they are showing learning concepts. Through pretend or fantasy play children are able to set up and resolve emotional conflicts (i.e. share mom with a new baby.) Play gives children the opportunity to try out many different roles and develop their social skills. Play therapy offers children a safe, natural and non-intrusive method of recovering from stresses during life events.
Play is the language of children. It is their most natural activity. Through play children express themselves, explore their world and learn. We as adults find ways of playing throughout our lives whether it is through art, sewing, cooking, building projects, dancing, kayaking or rollerblading. Play is an activity that benefits all of us and contributes to our overall sense of well-being.