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Early Years Program (ages 2 1/2 – 4)

Nurturing and Stimulating Young Minds

What does the Reggio-inspired environment look like in the Early Years?

Our learning spaces are beautiful. In the Reggio Emilia tradition the environment is clean, open, and inviting. The environment is filled with stunning materials, light tables, books, and furniture. Each classroom also has a mini-atelier (art studio). The Early Years environment has been specifically designed to meet the development needs of children aged 2 1/2 to 4 years and to stimulate rapid learning and brain growth.

Children in our Early Years program have access to the amazing facilities of our entire school,including our piazza (an open public space used for community gatherings), dramatic play centre, science lab, yoga and meditation room, kitchen, and performing arts spaces.

Our Early Years students also have their very own learning spaces that have been crafted specifically for smaller people. These include the Early Years indoor gym, art materials and resources for little hands, separate Early Years dining room, and the Early Years playground.

Tuition includes organic-based snacks and meals from Organic Kids in our full-day programs.

Our programs are in full compliance with the Ontario Child Care and Early Years’ Act and York Region Public Health provisions. We are inspected regularly.

Please note: Program fills quickly

Richland students are kind, happy, confident and responsible. As a community we foster relationships
with each other and our environment, based on respect and understanding.

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International Baccalaureate (IB) Primary Years Program (PYP) in the Early Years

Young learners are intelligent, resourceful and creative individuals who grow, develop and learn at different rates. They explore their environment and learn about their world through play and relationships with peers, teachers, family and community members. Early learning in the PYP is a holistic learning experience that integrates socio-emotional, physical and cognitive development. In the PYP classroom, it takes place in dynamic environments that promote play, discovery and exploration.

The PYP is transdisciplinary, meaning students learn across subject areas while investigating big ideas.

In the PYP, students learn about significant concepts through units of inquiry. In Early Years they study four transdisciplinary themes that guide units of inquiry and compose a year of study are:

• Who we are

• How we express ourselves

• How the world works

• Sharing the planet.

Units of inquiry interweave subject areas such as mathematics, language arts, science and social studies. This approach encourages students to make connections between what they learn and how it relates to the world around them.

Tuition includes organic-based snacks, beverages and meals.

If you have any questions call (905)-224-5600

What does an academically rigorous curriculum look like in the Early Years?

Richland Academy’s play-based Early Years program interweaves the provincial curriculum document “How Does Learning Happen? Ontario’s Pedagogy for the Early Years” with the IB framework. This curriculum is organized into four broad categories that are necessary for children to grow and flourish: Belonging, Well-Being, Engagement, and Expression.

  • Belonging refers to a sense of connectedness to others, an individual’s experiences of being valued, of forming relationships with others and making contributions as part of a group, a community, and the natural world.
  • Well-being addresses the importance of physical and mental health and wellness. It incorporates capacities such as self-care, sense of self, and self-regulation skills.
  • Engagement suggests a state of being involved and focused. Through play and inquiry, they develop skills such as problem solving, creative thinking, and innovating, which are essential for learning and success in school and beyond.
  • Expression or communication (to be heard, as well as to listen) may take many different forms.

What do inquiry-based learning classroom experiences look like in the Early Years?

Teachers carefully plan classroom spaces and materials to stimulate learning. Unique materials act as provocations to engage children in learning. As children explore and play their brains develop rapidly. Their fine motor skills and gross motor skills improve, the building blocks of literacy and numeracy develop, and their ability to socialize, solve conflicts, and recover from conflicts.