The Three Little Ships curriculum is play-based and designed to stimulate children to learn skills that are crucial for daily life, including the development of communication skills and social skills, well as early literacy and numeracy skills, if the students are ready for these. Through different sorts of play, such as constructional play, fantasy play, messy play and play guided by the teacher, communication, social and emotional development can take place.
There is an emphasis on independence skills and self-help skills. Students are encouraged to manage their own personal hygiene and eat and drink independently.
There is a monthly theme and many activities during the month are based on this theme. Six identified curriculum areas are used when planning the activities that are offered to the children in the classroom. These areas are:
- personal, health, social and emotional development
- communication, language and literacy development
- mathematical development
- knowledge and understanding of the world
- physical development
- creative development.
Many activities are organised to enhance speaking and listening in English, including Circle Time and sharing books together. Art and music activities take place through the week and help to reinforce language skills, as well as creativity and motor skills. There are also some special trips and dress-up days linked to the theme.
Special Dutch cultural days such as Sinterklaas, Christmas and King’s Day are celebrated in school.
Children who require individualised small-step teaching will also work on an individual basis with one of the preschool staff, often using the STAR program or Pivotal Response Training techniques.
The Three Little Ships Educational Policy gives more information about the preschool curriculum.