Children are born to learn, and Lincoln’s distinctive program for preschool students emphasizes respect for the child and his or her competencies, interests, and learning processes. Our approach is rooted in Quaker values and influenced by the internationally renowned Reggio Emilia concept of early childhood teaching and learning. Teachers trained in Reggio methods are expert facilitators in what is largely a child-initiated curriculum. Children follow their curiosity, develop their ideas, and learn about themselves and their world in a way that is both active and reflective.
Lower School houses three co-ed preschool classrooms: the Beech Tree room for young three-year-olds which is an extension of The Little School, the Oak Room for three and four year olds, and the Ginkgo Room for four and five year olds. With an evolving, emergent curriculum, children come to view school as a place of exploration and discovery. The curriculum is shaped by each child’s cognitive social and physical development.
Language and Literacy
In both the Oak and Ginkgo Rooms each child is exposed to written and oral language experiences through print, visual cues, symbols, poems, singing and chanting. We create a literate environment that fosters curiosity and a love of reading and writing.
Mathematical and Scientific Thinking
Children extend their understanding of mathematics through a wide range of experiences. Mathematical concepts of number, data collection, geometry, problem solving and measurement are imbedded in activities such as cooking, building and creating designs.
Beginning in the Oak Room each child visits the studio on a regular basis in small groups creating a community of learners allowing for individual endeavors and collaborative projects. It is a progressive exploration of materials, which is built upon from year to year. With increased exposure to materials children learn to investigate, create and explore in a more sophisticated manner during the Oak, Ginkgo and Kindergarten years. The materials range from objects found from the natural world, wire, clay, fiber, wood, paint and anything else that is of interest to the children. Enjoyment, observation, knowledge, relationships and respect are at the core of these experiences.
The goal of musical exploration is to provide a foundation for joyful, creative and confident musical expression throughout childhood and beyond. Music learning occurs in a play-based environment and children explore their singing voices, rhythm instruments, and creative and beat-centered movement.
Inspired by how easily young children acquire language, the objectives of the emergent languages program revolve around children’s innate confidence to recognize and mimic sounds and language patterns. The children enrolled in Lincoln School’s Early Childhood and The Little School are visited twice a week by a French teacher and twice a week by a Spanish teacher. The foreign language teachers speak only the target language as they sing, do art projects, read books, play games, and participate in the daily life and activities of the class with the children. The teachers take the role of a member of the “family” who doesn’t necessarily speak English, but interacts with the children in a warm and playful way, in order to build a trusting bond.
The Early Childhood Physical Education program is designed to develop both physical potential and positive social interaction at each grade level. Beginning in nursery each student is encouraged to participate fully, try new skills, listen and follow teacher direction, work cooperatively with peers and experience the enjoyment and benefits of physical activity. The students start with the development of locomotor skills such as skipping, galloping, running, hopping, jumping and learn movement efficiency and body control. They progress to more advanced physical movement through participation in cooperative and musical games, physical fitness activities, tumbling, jump rope, introduction to sports skills and age appropriate game play.
Extended Day and After School Enrichment