Each month we focus on a different theme that includes lessons, activities, and projects related to the theme. Parents are provided a monthly newsletter to highlight all of the exciting things their child will be learning about each month.
We recognize that students have varying backgrounds of knowledge, readiness, language, learning preferences, interests. The Homestead implements a flexible apporach to teaching and we are able to adjust curriculum and its distribution. In order to vary instructional approaches, we observe the three different learning styles (visual, auditory, kinesthetic) and understand which style best fits each student with various levels of support and complexity.
The Backyard Homestead
The backyard is a core part of our outdoor science and environmental education program at the Homestead Schoolhouse. Students will have the opportunity to study nature, learn work habits and develop appropriate social attitudes through our extensive garden-study program. The school garden will put a large emphasis on hands-on learning and active participation. Gardening is a skill children can use for the rest of their lives that promotes better health and wellness. The Backyard Homestead will play a large role in the adoption of healthy living habits for children. Students will have a chance to harvest a variety of fruits and vegetables throughout the year, which will help improve their attitudes towards these foods. As students gain excitement about growing their own fruits and vegetables, they will be more likely to eat them and they will grow a greater appreciation for how food is grown. They will also learn patience, responsibility, and team building. Homestead students will also learn about processing and proper storage through making applesause, jam, and baking bread. They will also plant flowers, plants and put together flower arrangements in pots and hanging baskets in our Homestead Greenhouse.
Visual Arts Program
The Homestead Schoolhouse values the importance of art and appreciates how it expands a child’s ability to interact with the world around them, and benefits their development.
The Visual Arts curriculum focuses on teaching the elements of art (line, shape, color, texture, form, space, value), using varieties of mediums, exploring Art History and most importantly, cultivating self-expression and communication. We value process over product and encourage the students to be creative, unique and express their own opinions.
We also use the Visual Arts to enhance the monthly themes as much as possible. For example, during Career Month our students become shoe designers, landscape architects, furniture designers and tailors.
Bjorn Rowberg is the music teacher at the Homestead Schoolhouse, and the owner and head instructor of Tabor Music. Bjorn has a passion for early childhood music education, and has over 10 years experience teaching piano to children and adults. He holds a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree in music from the University of Arizona.
Bjorn focuses on the most prominent and important aspects of early music education, which include rhythm, pulse, melody, singing, music theory, the musical alphabet and piano. He uses a lot of teaching aids such as xylophones, bells, drums, puppets, etc. to assist learning and to make learning music fun. New songs are taught that reinforce new concepts and principles.
We have a music room downstairs at the Annex, with a piano and several other instruments. It’s a great space for dancing and movement.
Our students will be learning Spanish through an early childhood foreign language curriculum called, “Sonrisas Spanish School” http://sonrisasspanishschool.com/
The Spanish program is designed to provide students with positive foreign language experience and language acquisition. Language acquisition is a long-term endeavor. Through positive language experience students will be introduced to Spanish through songs, stories, and art activities.
Our hope is to introduce your child to the Spanish language by engaging the imagination through music, literature and hands-on learning.
Spanish class is held for our 3-4 year old classes and our 4-5 year old classes by our lovely Ms. Karina.
Beyond the Classroom
We take several field trips and nature walks throughout the year so that our children can see that learning can happen outside the classroom too. Field trips compliment a particular theme that we are focusing on that month in the classroom. Our goal for the field trips is to be educational, fun, and connect with our local community.