My Child 3-6 Pre-School
31 August 2015 was the first day of school at My Child Pre-school. The Medacta for Life Foundation extended its educational services with the pre-school: now children aged 3–6 years can also find an educational environment and project tailored to their needs. My Child, a bilingual Italian/English school, is open all day (7-19) and offers extracurricular activities: before and after school, in-house canteen service, workshops and afternoon courses (My After Time). The school is open 49 weeks a year. It runs the My Weeks service during the cantonal school holidays and My Summer Camp service during the summer holidays.
The children in our classes are guided daily by three teachers, each responsible for a different educational aspect: bilingualism (Italian/English), Montessori method, creative Atelier. This opportunity encourages individual and small group work, precise observation and the development of individual projects.
The structure of the My Child Preschool today consists of 2 mixed year classes (3-5 years). The premises are Open Space: they allow free choice when working with Montessori material, the English language material is available for everyone (English Corner) and have two dedicated workshops: the research/creation atelier, which uses the 100 languages of children according to the Reggio approach, and the Arno Stern painting atelier (the Closlieu).
Large floor-to-ceiling windows allow light to enter and the children to get in touch with the surrounding nature: in front of the classes are the woods with a small river and the Mezzana agricultural estate, a large playground, paved outdoor areas for a variety of outdoor activities and the football pitch.
Very important at My Child is also the space dedicated to Outdoor Education, in which we firmly believe for the healthy and conscious growth of our children. Every day there are moments of leisure and outdoor activities. Every week there are outings to wooded areas or trips around the territory, and for the older children there is lunch in the woods in small groups, where they can enjoy the pleasure of a daily routine in the nature, shared with friends and teachers.
The weekly program includes music education, motor activity and psychomotricity, taught by expert teachers.
Our educational project shares the educational aims of the Study Plan of the Canton of Ticino. These objectives are expressed in daily practice through the tools provided by the integrated methodological approach we promote; we define them as follows:
- Promoting the discovery and valorisation of one’s own identity
- Developing functional and emotional autonomy
- Developing skills on the basis of one’s own characteristics
- Developing socialization and a sense of community
- Opening up knowledge of the world
- Promoting the participation of families, trying to encourage the connection between school experience and experience outside the school.
A typical day
A typical day in pre-school is organised as follows:
9 a.m. : Circle Time – welcoming and greeting time with games and songs
9.30 a.m. : classroom activities with Montessori materials/art in the Reggio Atelier/music/psychomotricity
from 10.30 a.m. : outdoor activities
12 o’clock : lunch
1 p.m. : personal hygiene by brushing teeth
from 1.30 p.m. : naptime for the little ones / afternoon activities and free play for all the others
3 p.m. : snack
from 3.30 p.m. : exit
My Child in one year
Throughout the year there are also special activities and projects, some of which are now customary and others which are new and experimental, to share seasonal proposals, attractive outdoor opportunities, and new ideas from the local area.
- The school in the woods with the WWF biologist (photo)
- The Story Night, an event introduced in 1991 by an initiative of the Swiss Institute for Media and Children, whereby on the same night, across Switzerland, letters and stories are read out loud on one common topic, which is the same for everyone.
- The Usborne Book Fair, where families have the opportunity to buy books in English guided by experts and our teachers. The book sale allows the school to receive books to enrich its internal library.
- The birthday according to Maria Montessori, a very beautiful and evocative ritual to celebrate each passing year. This ritual is part of the child’s Cosmic Education: relevant aspects of each age (photos, objects, memories) are highlighted for each year that has passed from birth to their current birthday. The classmates, seated around a circular mat and representing the 12 months of the year, share the child’s memories and the birthday boy or girl blows out a candle for each year that has passed.
- Individual meetings with parents. The teachers meet with the parents individually twice a year. On a daily basis, the teachers observe the actions, relationship methods and choices of materials/activities performed by the children. Meeting with the parents is a moment of comparison and feedback from both sides, with respect to the child’s behaviour in the two different contexts. The meeting therefore becomes an opportunity to assess together the practicability of the educational strategies applied.
- The charity markets, to raise funds to donate to friendly associations, which we hope to resume soon.
- Holidays to live together: Carnival, Halloween, Easter become moments of play and activities to be shared with friends, dressed up or searching for eggs and clues in the woods!
Discover our team
Highly qualified educational staff in regular training, with native Italian and English speakers full time!