Each Head Start Classroom is a unique and special learning environment. The classroom, by design, is set-up to meet the needs of both the individual child and the entire group as a whole. All classrooms are arranged by several different learning centers.These learning centers or interest area’s include, but not limited to: Blocks, Dramatic Play, Toys and Games, Art, Library, Discovery, Sand and Water, Music and Movement, Cooking, and Computers.
In each of these areas all children have ample opportunities to:
- Increase their language development in a print rich environment
- Enhance their social skills
- Creatively express themselves
- Gain knowledge through exploration and discovery
- Build and gain trust
- Work with others
- Create interest and curiosity about themselves and their learning environment
- Build empathy for others
- Increase small and large motor development
- Gain a positive attitude towards school
And much, much more...
FBHS believes in the importance of creating an environment that represents the community and the diversity that surrounds the children where they live. Thus all classrooms are set-up to include aspects that are multi-cultural in nature. There will be printed language in the home language of the children.
Our classrooms are equipped with dolls, puzzles, pictures, and other items that represent a variety of cultures and ethnicities. Parents and community members are invited to participate in our classroom activities.
Also, we prepare food that represent the families and the cultures we serve. Our Teacher to Child ratio averages about 1:8, with the maximum ration of 1:10.
All children are given plenty of opportunities to play in open outdoor space, build structures, ride bikes and scooters, climb outdoor structures, and participate in pretend play. Our outdoor equipment and experiences are designed to increase growth, both physically and cognitively.
All FBHS staff, especially the education staff, must clear mandated back ground checks from the Department of Justice, the FBI, and have a Child Abuse Index check. Plus they must have a pre-employment health checks. These requirements are to ensure children, and our staff, is safe and secure.
All education staff meets the minimum requirements for their position, with most being well over the minimum qualifications. Most of the staff posses a permit from State of California, Commission of Teacher Credentialing Office. All education staff are required to continue both their personal and professional development through coursework, seminars, conferences, and/or other activities. FBHS also holds numerous staff trainings and in-services to ensure we continue to grow as professionals.
The curriculum that FBHS uses is created by a collaboration with parent and staff input. The main curriculum used is called the Creative Curriculum. The Creative Curriculum is renowned, developmentally appropriate, and based on theory and research. It allows our staff to gain knowledge and have insight into; The Family’s Role, The Teacher’s Role, How Children Learn and Develop, What Children Learn, and The Learning Environment. These five components of the Creative Curriculum are used as a framework for the Teachers. This allows opportunities for staff to individualize and tailor their lesson plans to meet the needs of their children.
We also incorporate other techniques and curriculum types into our program such as High Scope, Montessori, Whole Child, and the Head Start S.T.E.P. Teacher’s Manual. Together we bring it altogether to ensure we are doing “best practices” in the field of Child Development.
Each and every child is screened, assessed and observed throughout the year here at FBHS. The children are screened, assessed, and observed to; show individual and group growth, discover potential developmental delays, see what the child knows, document growth, and learn about, and plan for, the individual child.
We use the following screenings, assessments and observations: Behavior Screening, Speech and Language Screening, Desired Results Developmental Profile Plus, and Anecdotal Notes.
All these documents, along with monthly samples of your child’s writing, drawing and/or cuttings, are collected and stored in your child’s Portfolio.
The education staff will discuss and show you the Portfolio at certain times throughout the year, plus give you the contents at years’ end. Collecting and analyzing the above data allows our staff to have an in-depth knowledge of your child, plan for their individual needs, and create a special bond with your child.