Philosophy and Curriculum
The Darien Early Learning Program values each child as an individual learner with unique strengths, needs and interests. We support children to become critical thinkers and social learners. Our play-based learning environments provide daily opportunities for preschool children to be purposeful, creative, inquisitive, flexible, and reflective. As a program designed to meet the needs of all learners, children in our diverse classrooms develop empathy toward others and an appreciation of differences. Families are critical partners in our support of children’s growth and development.
Our approach to preschool curriculum planning has its foundation in the philosophies of “Emergent Curriculum” and “Project Approach”. Teachers use a variety of curriculum resources to plan the classroom environment, experiences, interactions, and opportunities for family engagements that are meaningful and relevant to the observed interests of children. The CT Early Learning and Development Standards for Birth to Five detail what children should know and be able to do and serve as the basis for planning. Teachers engage in the cycle of intentional teaching, consistently observing and assessing children’s growth and using this information to plan and implement the highest quality learning experiences.