Our new Associate Director of Admissions Lauren Knapp wants to help prospective families learn more about what it's like to attend BASIS Independent McLean for our youngest learners! Ms. Knapp sat down with some of our PreK and Kindergarten students to learn more about their favorite parts of going to school here.
First stop: The Neutron Classroom! Each BASIS Independent McLean class is assigned an element of the periodic table. However, as our youngest students, our two PreK classes are given smaller scientific terms: Protons and Neutrons.
I sat down with Jax A. '31 to begin my day and the first thing I wanted to know was about a recent project he had worked on with his classmates. Jax answered immediately that they made hearts for Valentine's Day. "Our class voted if we would make hearts or have a longer recess." We see what activity won! Personally, I was impressed that the students wanted to do another activity in the classroom instead of recess. They really love learning! Jax told me that he helped make the heart that has "the little hearts painted on the big heart."
After seeing the hearts that Neutrons created, I asked Jax to show or tell me more about other things he was learning.
"We learned the money song to help us learn how much a penny is," said Jax.
This week, the Neutrons practiced subtraction by learning how to "take away shamrocks" in math. When I asked him about the sticker on his shirt, he said that the "Sticker Fairy" gave it to him for resting during nap time. Our Early Learning teachers teach students the importance of resting their brains after learning!
We also discussed Jax's favorite parts of school, which are recess and playing Power Rangers with his friend in the other PreK element.
My next stop was our second PreK class: Protons! There, I met with Drake S. '31 and Ifechi O. '31. They were so excited to talk to me about their day. I loved seeing their energy and enthusiasm!
The highlight of our meeting was hearing them sing a song they learned to celebrate Black History Month (and, by the way, their singing skills were quite impressive). We talked about so many projects during our conversation—from hearing about their new reading buddies to how they do oil pastels in art class with Ms. Mauri and playing drums and singing "Over the Rainbow" in Mr. Junsay's music class. Drake's favorite class is STEM. When I asked him why, he proudly stated,"I like building things!"
The students really seemed to love reading since we talked about a lot of the books they like to read during Literacy. A Letter to Amy by Ezra Jack Keats was one of Ifechi's favorites!
Ifechi and Drake both attend Late Bird at our school, which is a supervised after-school program available to our students after the formal school day ends.
Perhaps the best part of my conversation was hearing Ifechi and Drake say how much they love their teachers: "We love Ms. Smith and Ms. Zafari so much!"
My third stop in Early Learning was with our Kindergarten class: Oxygen. Luckily for me, I was actually able to sit and have lunch with Ashi M. '30 and Matthew B. '30.
Here are some of the highlights:
Ashi: "We learned about insects and how spiders aren't insects because they have more than six legs." Matthew and Ashi also told me how they practiced drawing insects, even make-believe ones!
Matthew: "In Math we were studying how 5 + 5 is 10. We also learned that if 5 + 5 is 10, then 5 + 6 is 11 because you are adding one more."
Matthew: "We did contraction surgery. We learned how to put two words together. 'Are' and 'not' together is 'a-r-e-n-'-t.'" The students wore doctor hats and put bandaids on the words they put together too!
Ashi also showed me how they studied compound words in literacy by building ice cream cones. Each scoop of ice cream was a different word and they put the scoops of ice cream together to build their ice cream cone and create compound words, like "homework."
Last on my list of questions was to ask about their friends. Both Matthew and Ashi smiled big and mentioned a few of their friends in class.
Matthew shared, "I like this school more than my old school because I have more friends here!"
I loved getting to know these students, especially since I'm new to BASIS Independent McLean myself! I was so impressed with our Early Learning students. Everyone is so welcoming and I love the mixture of learning, play, and friendship in each classroom. I can't wait to share all the fun stories I've heard from the Early Learning students with prospective families.
Stay tuned for future posts in this series. Next up: I'm visiting our primary students.
I loved getting to know these students, especially since I’m so new to BASIS Independent McLean myself! I was so impressed with our Early Learning students. Everyone is so welcoming and I love the mixture of learning, play and friendship in each classroom. I can't wait to share all the fun stories I've learned from the Early Students with prospective families. Stay tuned for future posts in this series. Next up: visiting our primary students! You can learn more about our Early Learning Program through a private tour on our campus.