Early Childhood Education
The Planting Seeds Program is a child-centered, activity based, early childhood educational program which centers on a philosophy of love, nurturing and caring to provide an education for the whole child: physical, emotional, social, intellectual, creative & spiritual.
A Philosophy of Love and Caring about our Fellow Human Beings
Children are taught to love themselves, by celebrating the things they can do well, and accepting their limits, while always striving to do their personal best. Once a child has a strong sense of self, he/she is able to reach out and form meaningful relationships with others.
Instilled with confidence, children are free to explore new ideas, try different things and initiate their own learning, resulting in strong critical thinking and problem-solving skills, so necessary in today’s world.
The Whole Child Approach
Committed to the idea of holistic education, Planting Seeds designs programs that address the needs of the whole child: physically, emotionally, socially, cognitively, creatively and spiritually. This program recognizes that each child is unique, and can experience personal success, if the activities are developmentally appropriate for one’s age and stage of development. As guide and facilitator of the program, the teacher encourages children to:
- Develop a profound respect for themselves, others and the environment
- Participate in the discovery learning process
- Each progress along his/her own developmental continuum
- Express his/her own ideas
- Demonstrate a self-directed learning style
- Develop one’s unique gifts and talents
- “Learn how to learn”
As in most quality preschools, children in Planting Seeds programs learn primarily through play. A number of different learning centers throughout the classroom address the various needs of the children.
- Cognitive area (simple concepts such as colour, counting, shapes etc.)
- Pre- Writing area (fine motor skills, eye hand coordination etc.)
- Pre- Reading area (introduction to and appreciation of books)
- Creative area (self-expression and sense of personal value)
- Role Play Area (imagination and social skills)
- Block Corner (imagination and simple science concepts)
- Sand Table (sensory awareness, imagination and simple science)
- Water Table (sensory awareness, Imagination, simple science)
- Each day the children work on independent hands-on learning activities in the classroom centers. These activities are geared to the developmental level of the children, to ensure that each child may have the opportunity to experience success. Activities must be challenging, but should not so challenging, that the child is not capable of accomplishing the task.
The Role of the Teacher
The role of the teacher is to set up a rich and stimulating environment, observe the children while playing, and to be available as guide and facilitator, when needed. Skillful questioning techniques encourage children to stay focused, and step by step complete the learning task.
Circle time provides the opportunity for limited teacher- directed learning, in a child centered environment, through songs, rhymes, music and movement and learning games focused on the weekly theme. All children are encouraged to enthusiastically participate.
Plantando Semillas currently operates Planting Seeds Classroom Programs at these sites: Guatemala City, San Lucas, and the remote mountain villages of Sacala Las Lomas, San Antonio de Tioxya and Yepo Capa.