La maternelle it is not a simple kindergarten. It represents the first stage on the educational journey within the French curriculum. The preschool’s aim is to awaken desire in children to go to school, to develop and satisfy their curiosity, to play and learn.
The preschool lays the educational and pedagogical foundations on which all subsequent stages of education are based and built. At the preschool, children ages from two and a half to six years acquire the habit of respecting the schedule tailored to them as well as a good knowledge of the French language essential for further education.
Areas of study
Education is organized into five main units.
Using language in all its forms
The focus in the preschool is set on learning French. Mastering the French language, which is the teaching language, is a basic prerequisite for the success of our students. The stimulation and structuring of the oral language are gradually added as the introduction of culture of the written language. Students acquire the first elements of phonological awareness, enrich their vocabulary, develop syntax.
Reacting, expressing themselves and understanding through physical activities
Physical activity affects the development of motor skills, senses, feelings, intellectual abilities, and interpersonal relationships in children. All these activities engage, encourage, enrich imagination and provide an opportunity to identify feelings and new observations.
Daily physical activity in preschool contributes to health education and enables all children, irrespective of their « sports results », to feel satisfaction because of the movements they perform and the effort they put in, and to get to know their body as much as possible in order to respect it. Physical activities can vary: changing positions in relation to objects for longer or shorter periods of time, adjusting balance and movement across different environments, communicating with others through emotional or artistic expression, cooperation, joint action, and confrontation within group games.
Reacting, expressing themselves and understanding through artistic activities
Students discover different forms of artistic expression. Artistic activities help children develop their imagination, express their emotions and interact within a group.
Learning about mathematical tools
Through play, object manipulation and problem solving, mathematics is linked to stimulating curiosity, satisfaction, and the desire to explore.
It enables them to understand and use numbers, recognize shapes, and group objects with different properties into appropriate categories according to certain criteria (shape, size: length, mass, volume – color, purpose, function). Our goal in preschool is to develop the pleasure mathematical reasoning brings to the children.
Exploring the world around us
During the three years in preschool, children learn to observe and introspect about the world that surrounds them. They pique their curiosity and explore the living world, man-made objects and matter.They reason, experiment and try to understand. They learn how to understand the concepts of time and space.
Life in a community
At our preschool, children gradually learn to follow the rhythm imposed by a life within a community: following the activities suggested by the teacher, respecting the schedule and the rules of spending time together. Children spend many hours in the company of their peers and establish firm relationships which enable them to engage in the learning process jointly and with pleasure. EFB is an inclusive school, and children with disabilities can be admitted.
All activities are conducted in French. The children naturally learn and make progress in learning French during the three or four years spent in our preschool. For children outside the French-speaking area, learning French is carried out on the basis of a good knowledge of the mother tongue. This is one of the reasons why learning Serbian is mandatory for everyone.
Students start learning English at Grande Section, i.e. the final year of preschool, when you can choose one of the two offered teaching programs:
- Classique (enriched French course) includes learning basic English for 1 hour per week as of the Grande Section (final year of preschool). This program includes 2 hours of English classes per week in primary school.
- Parle (reinforced English course) includes learning English for 4 hours and 30 minutes per week as of the Grande Section (final year of preschool). Children continue this program during primary school, with 5 hours of English classes per week.
For more information on linguistic programs check the link.
Teachers make a constructive assessment of children’s progress with positive dynamics throughout the school year. Each assessment must be signed by a parent. The child’s progress is recorded in the Carnet de Réussites which is available to parents twice a year (in January and June).
A typical day at la maternelle
ASEMs meet the children at 7:50 a.m. at the extended stay premises. Classes start at 8:20 a.m. and end at 3:35 p.m., on all days except Wednesday, when they end at 2:35 p.m. and Friday at 11:35 a.m. All activities are carried out in classrooms in the presence of educators, either in small groups or through workshops. Children have time to rest and play in the yard that is fully adjusted to their age.
Children who are registered for cafeteria have lunch between 11:35 a.m. and 12:55 p.m.
EFB also offers the extended stay program. Parents of children registered for the extended stay program may pick them up after classes, no later than 6 p.m., i.e. no later than 4 p.m. on Fridays.