How We Teach
Clear Guidelines for Teachers
The HighScope Preschool Curriculum includes defined teaching practices that enable adults to create effective early childhood programs. These practices are discussed in detail in HighScope training and publications. Three topics are particularly important for teachers who want to strengthen their programs — adult-child interaction, classroom layout and materials, and the daily routine.
Adult-child interaction is the process of working alongside children and communicating with them both verbally and nonverbally to encourage learning. A key strategy for adult-child interaction is sharing control with children. Additional strategies include supporting children's play, using encouragement instead of praise, and taking a problem-solving approach to conflict.
HighScope settings are divided into interest areas stocked with a stimulating range of materials designed for specific types of play, for example, house area, art area, block area, small toy area, computer area, reading and writing area. Materials are arranged in consistent places and the shelves are tagged with child-friendly labels so that children can get out and put away materials themselves. The classroom's organization also helps children understand how the world is organized, and concepts like more, less, same, different, large, small, in, out, in front of, etc.
The Daily Routine
In HighScope programs there is a consistent framework for the day that provides a balanced variety of experiences and learning opportunities. Children engage in both individual and social play, participate in small- and large- group activities, assist with cleanup, socialize during meals, develop self-care skills, and exercise their small and large muscles. The most important segment of the daily routine is the plan-do-review sequence, in which children make choices about what they will do, carry out their ideas, and reflect upon their activities with adults and other children.
Preschool Curriculum Overview