The First School program at Key offers children a happy and enriching experience in a secure and caring environment with the highest priority placed on building self-confidence while developing the whole child. The program is implemented with the utmost attention to the needs, talents and uniqueness of each individual.
An integrated curriculum provides an introduction to a host of intellectual experiences that enhance each child’s understanding of, and appreciation for, the world. The children learn to work cooperatively with one another, to share, to assert themselves constructively, to respect others, and to honor established standards for classroom behavior.
With an emphasis on instilling a love of learning—while strengthening each child’s skills and work habits—the children participate in meaningful learning experiences. The cognitive, social, emotional, physical, moral, and aesthetic aspects of each child’s development are addressed by sensitive and experienced teachers in the daily implementation of the curriculum.
- Inquiry-Based & Play-Based Learning
First School students are engaged in active learning experiences through unite that integrate learning across the curriculum, spending a significant portion of their day moving, talking, drawing, building, acting, and singing. Children are encouraged to explore, question and take the lead.
- Multi-Sensory Phonics Approach
Early literacy and language skills are developed by engaging all of the senses as children learn actions, stories, songs, and clever mnemonics associated with letter sounds, building a solid foundation for success in reading.
- Focus on Social/Emotional Development
Life skills are integrated throughout individual units and academic disciplines with the goals of developing self-awareness, self-regulation and capacity to collaborate. Lessons include visual, auditory and kinesthetic elements and focus on building empathy, emotional management, problem solving, and skills for learning.
- Early-Childhood Specialists
Classes in science, music, library, art, outdoor education, and physical education are taught by highly specialized Key faculty members in campus facilities that include studios, laboratories, outdoor classrooms, and gymnasiums.
- Diversity, Inclusivity and Belonging
Thoughtfully selected children's literature and thematic units of study are used as vehicles for helping children develop an understanding of themselves and one another, and an appreciation for other cultures. Through classroom activities and day-to-day interactions, teachers help students gain insight to, and comfort with, differences and similarities as they learn the importance of listening to one another’s ideas and perspectives.