The 5-Day program is designed to foster the growth of cooperative play in four-year olds and to enhance their confidence and self-expression. It takes a developmental approach to academic skills, focusing on the whole child, and including students’ physical, communication, and social skills in curriculum planning and program design.
The goal of the 5-Day class is to have four-year old children see themselves as problem solvers. Whether the problem is where to place a puzzle piece, how to share a toy or how to explain what happened in a story, the children in the 5-Day class quickly learn the critical thinking skills that, with the aid of a trusted adult, will help them use creative play to find a solution.
The teachers provide the children with ongoing activities such as easel painting, drawing, cutting, block building, play dough, books, dress-up and puzzles. Special interest centers have new and interesting activities presented on a daily basis. The class offers a consistent and safe routine of daily activities while still engaging children’s innate curiosity and creativity. Children are excited to enter and explore their classroom each day.
8:55 Morning Meeting
9:00 Activity Time
10:25 Group Time
11:00 Sharing & Story
11:20 Dress for Outside
Typically, more than half of the 5-Day children attend kindergarten the following year. 5-Day focuses on preparing children for kindergarten by incorporating early literacy, math concepts, and social development through daily, fun classroom activities. For example, the children sample different apple varieties, vote for the one they like the best, and graph the classroom results to determine the favorite apple. Another day, letter stencils will be available for the children to practice tracing and writing skills.
The 5-Day curriculum exposes the children to upper and lower case alphabet letters, numbers 1-10, shapes, and fine motor skills such as grasping a pencil correctly. Most children can write their own name by the end of the year. Additionally, the teachers individually talk with children who are attending kindergarten on what to expect and help prepare them for registration day. Many parents comment on the ease of transition from Bowen to kindergarten the following year.
The Bowen 5-Day class organizes its themes for the year based upon a seasonal design, but also incorporates children’s particular interests. Themes are carried through to all of the interest areas in the classroom using hands-on activities. Examples of popular 5-Day themes:
- Fall: Colors, The Farm, Five Senses
- Winter: Transportation, Winter Sports, Birds, Ocean Life
- Spring: Ice Cream, All About Me, Artists