This curriculum map shows how each learning topic is connected -- it is a sample from last year’s swallow classroom (Pre-K).

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Assessment

At Aozora Gakuen, we perform authentic assessment of each child throughout the school year so that we can understand them holistically and also support their development effectively. Our assessment is an ongoing process of careful observation and collecting anecdotal notes on child’s development. Although careful observation requires effort, the approach has high ecological validity and intrudes minimally into what children are doing. (Epstein, Schweinhart, DeBruin-Parecki, & Robin, 2004) Through the assessment process, our teachers can learn about each child and help them to know how to support each child’s individual development in every domain such as intellectual, motivational, social, physical, aesthetic, and so on. We share and discuss what we observed in each child with his/her parents during our semi-annual parents-teacher conferences in December and May.

Among the preschool program teaching team, we share reports on the children from all classes daily, and all the class lead teachers sit down weekly to discuss together for any concerning matters from the daily observation. Through carefully interpreting these observations as a team, we make adjustments and improvements in our goals and lesson plans. For those children who need further support or assistance, we set up an individualized intervention project for the child to give more specific attention. We keep the process of collecting datas and anecdotal notes on the child during the intervention project. In addition, all of our teaching staff attend professional development workshops and classes to keep up on the most up-to-date information and research in the field of early childhood education.