About Kindergarten

Kindergarten at Open Window School is an exciting adventure. We embrace and celebrate the curious minds and boundless energy of five- and six-year-old gifted students. As we welcome our new kindergartners into the school, we help them get to know their new OWS community through special events and partnerships with other grade levels including cooperative projects and eighth grade buddies. As they learn about their community, kindergartners also learn more about themselves as they work to answer the big question "Who am I?" 

Additionally, kindergarteners learn what it means to be part of a classroom community through a carefully constructed scope and sequence of experiences that focus on social and emotional learning. Students learn how to name their feelings, how to express their feelings appropriately, and how to listen to others when they express their feelings. Students also begin learning about mindfulness and how to be fully present in a situation. Understanding what it means to be mindful and to practice being mindful teaches students to refocus – a process that helps minimize overreactions or being overwhelmed by a situation. Recognizing how formative the first year of school is, the Open Window School Kindergarten experience nurtures and inspires our youngest students as they begin their journey through school.

List of 5 items.

  • Language Arts

    The Language Arts program is designed to nourish emergent readers and writers while developing literacy at all levels. Language arts concepts are integrated throughout the kindergarten curriculum. Kindergarten classrooms surround students with books and environmental print, nurturing their curiosity through carefully chosen anchor texts and research-based teaching practices. Students participate in independent and group language activities, such as discussing a story’s message, answering prompts, and making class books. Students select from authentic reading and writing choices, working independently toward personalized goals, while the teacher meets individual needs through whole-group and small-group instruction, as well as one-on-one conferring.

    The development of a strong phonemic awareness is also a focus for every student and is supported by systematic phonics and word study. Writing is integrated throughout the curriculum and occurs daily including writing journals, reader response activities, and handwriting lessons. Communication skills are emphasized through class discussions, cooperative group experiences, personal interactions and during social-emotional skill lessons.
  • Math

    As a part of Open Window School's program, the math curriculum is accelerated by one year. As kindergarteners working a year ahead, students' mathematical thinking and reasoning abilities are developed through appropriately leveled problems and investigations in the areas of number, operations, algebraic thinking, measurement, data, and geometry. Some of these problems and investigations grow out of ventures into everyday life—reading stories, playing games, drawing pictures, building structures, making collections, and conducting simple hands-on science experiments—while others delve more deeply into the world of mathematics itself. Students are encouraged to explore, develop, test, discuss, and apply ideas: to see mathematics as something fluid, vibrant, creative, and relevant.

    Students focus intensively on four critical areas of mathematics: 1) addition and subtraction within twenty; 2) whole number relationships and place value; 3) linear measurement in non-standard units; 4) reasoning with shapes and their attributes.
  • Science

    Devoted strictly to kindergarten through fourth grade learners, the Open Window Lower School Science Lab offers inquiry based, hands-on experiences for young students. Capitalizing on the natural curiosity and zeal for learning of gifted students, the lower school science curriculum develops a solid foundation of science skills and a passion for all things scientific. Scientific investigations cover four domains over the course of kindergarten through fourth grade: the physical sciences; the life sciences; the earth and space sciences; and engineering, technology, and applications of science.
    Kindergarten classes begin their year with an introduction to scientific investigations in a unit called Thinking Like a Scientist. Students learn to ask questions, define problems, make observations, and analyze data through units such as Five Senses and Food and Insects. These topics are integrated closely with homeroom projects and activities.
  • Social Studies

    Who Am I? is the overarching question that guides the kindergarten social studies curriculum. Students explore their passions, interests and qualities that make themselves unique and special. The culminating event for this unit is a parade, where students design their own floats, complete with decorations and symbols that represent each individual member of the class. Quite literally, the entire school turns out for this parade. A family potluck (barring pandemic restrictions), featuring the favorite foods of each student, brings the kindergarten students and their families together for a favorite fall celebration.

    Throughout the second half of the school year students learn about nutrition. We look closely at our meals and talk about the different food groups. We continue by exploring where food comes from, how it gets to the grocery store and our dinner plates. This learning culminates in an exciting partner project where students design a menu based on healthy guidelines, and their own experiences with food. The event is called “The Dinner Party” and comes alive with a peer presentation and a taste of new foods.

  • Spanish

    The Lower School’s exploratory Spanish program aims to inspire an early passion for learning language. It introduces students to important vocabulary and fosters awareness and appreciation of Spanish-speaking cultures with authentic stories, songs, and games. The curriculum includes themes that relate to students and their surroundings, reflecting their needs, interests, and everyday life and provides the opportunity for students to begin developing the speaking, listening, writing, and reading skills necessary to communicate confidently and proficiently in Spanish.

    In kindergarten Spanish, students engage in story-driven units about animals as they learn basic colors, numbers, feelings, actions, and adjectives. The primary focus is on understanding and speaking as students begin their journey as Spanish-language learners.

Sample Schedule

8:15-8:30 Morning Work 
8:30-9:00 Literacy Centers 
9:00-9:30 Morning Meeting/ SEL 
9:30-10:00 Science 
10:00-10:30 Snack/ Recess 
10:30-11:00 Social Studies 
11:00-11:30 Writer's Workshop 
11:30-12:00 Recess 
12:00-12:30 Lunch/ Read Aloud 
12:30-1:30 Math 
1:30-2:00 Technology 
2:00-2:30 Snack/ Recess 
2:30-3:00 Problem Solving 
3:00-3:15 Pack-Up/ Class Jobs 

Kindergarten Teachers

List of 4 members.

  • Photo of Jasmine Dailida

    Jasmine Dailida 

    Kindergarten Teacher
  • Photo of Anita Erskine

    Anita Erskine 

    Associate Teacher, Kindergarten
  • Photo of Trudy Tauscheck

    Trudy Tauscheck 

    Kindergarten Teacher
  • Photo of Stephanie Close

    Stephanie Close 

    Associate Teacher, Kindergarten
Open Window School provides a challenging academic curriculum blended with nurturing support from teachers that prepares students for long-term success.