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  • 9th Avenue School: Making Kids Learn through P.L.A.Y.

    Through purposeful play, this school in Taguig engages kids in a creative learning environment.
    by Carine Garcia .
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    "We believe that children learn naturally through play, because when they're playing, they're engaged with the environment, their teacher, and the materials," said Teacher Tiffany. "Through play, they learn so many things -- from their physical to social to language skills -- as well as develop creativity. And what's so nice about it is it's not contrived. It's something the child will learn naturally, without much assistance from the teacher."

    Teacher Tiffany described the school's regular preschool programs as a mix of both structured and unstructured play. Structure comes in when the children sit down for "circle time" activities, wherein they sing songs and follow teacher-directed instructions.

    "Choice time," on the other hand, gives children the chance to roam around the classroom and keep themselves busy at the different learning centers laid out for them. This is the unstructured part of the curriculum.

    "We call our approach 'P.L.A.Y.,' which stands for 'Progressive Learning for Academic Yearners,'" said Teacher Ina. "And although we teach through play, it's actually a very carefully-planned environment and curriculum.”

    The children can enjoy the different centers, such as the writing table, which zones in on fine motor skills; the manipulatives table, which focuses on problem solving and early math skills; the art table, which teaches them creativity, symmetry, and aesthetics; and the play dough table, which builds hand muscles and coordination.

    9th Avenue School offers regular preschool classes for children ages 2, 3, and 4, and accepts children with special needs. The school also has a part-time preschool program (i.e. 3 times a week), and a class for children aged 18-23 months. An extended-day program provides day care center services to parents and children looking for this sort of arrangement.

    Teacher Ina also offers the Orton-Gillingham method of reading, which is a multi-sensory approach to reading and writing intended primarily for children with learning difficulties and for students who want a more holistic reading experience.

    "We always invite parents to come and check out the school because the best way to find out if it's a good school is if the kids are happy," said Teacher Ina. And if their big smiles and playful shrieks are any indication, the children of 9th Avenue School sure are.

    9th Avenue School is located at the mezzanine floor of the Active Fun Building, 9th Avenue corner 28th Street, Bonifacio Global City with contact numbers (0917)801-PLAY or 8561478. For more information, visit www.9thavenueschool.com or check out their Facebook page.

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