STEAM; Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math are seamlessly integrated into our inquiry-based and child-led approach to learning.
STEAM at POTA begins early on. Teachers focus on observational skills and fostering correct and sophisticated language beginning in our infant program. Children are taught to focus on what they have “noticed” and to build upon knowledge they already possess. They are encouraged to wonder about the world around them and to ask questions beginning with “why” and “how”. This intentional scaffolding of knowledge is woven seamlessly through our Toddler, Nursery and Pre-K classrooms so that children become well-prepared and experienced scientists ready to assume the challenges of Kindergarten and beyond. Since children are naturally curious, our inquiry-based approach is ideally suited to their development as critical thinkers and self-motivated learners.
STEAM at POTA takes on an active, hands-on, and immersive approach to learning. Teachers introduce inspiring materials and objects referred to as provocations, to stimulate children’s curiosity and prompt them to think and ask questions. Often, the child forms a hypothesis based on his or her observation and, together with the teacher, begins planning the process of how to test the validity of this hypothesis. Children test their ideas in order to expand their knowledge and depth of understanding. The scientific method comes alive in our classrooms beginning the moment the child makes an observation, which is documented by the teacher and the child. Technology is introduced to children as a product of human innovation that provides invaluable support for their exploration and research. Technology is used in conjunction with hands-on experiences, creativity, and play which are integral to children’s optimal development. Children represent their thoughts and findings through drawing, writing, creating 3D models, dancing, singing, and creating graphs.
Teachers bring children interesting provocations, promoting curiosity and wonderment about the world around them. The teachers model how a hypothesis can be “tested” and ask the children to predict outcomes. Our curriculum is inquiry based, where the children’s questions are validated and taken seriously so that the classrooms can be