Mission Statement

 

The St. Athanasius Little Halos Bilingual Day School is committed to providing children with a quality education that emphasizes social, emotional, academic, cultural, and spiritual development through play, and both emergent and didactic curricula.  Our belief is that children are active learners, explorers, experimenters, storytellers, and artists.  In our child-centered classrooms, children have many opportunities to learn about literacy, numeracy, democratic and empathetic citizenship, as well as Greek culture and Orthodox religion.  They accomplish this through play, the fundamental building block of academic learning for young children.  All learning occurs in a Greek/English bilingual context as it fosters the building of creative and flexible brains and minds.

 


Little Halos Philosophy


The philosophy of Little Halos Bilingual Preschool is eclectic.  It is anchored in the developmental theory of Russian psychologist and thinker Lev Vygotsky and the philosophy of the Greek thinker Socrates.  The Vygotskian approach to child development focuses on socio-dramatic play as the hallmark of all learning.  The concept of ZPD (“the zone of proximal development”) serves as our guide in supporting children’s daily learning.  We use shared language, focused intent and attention, and tangible reminders to challenge children’s learning just above their current level of understanding so that they can grow and develop in more sophisticated ways. The Socratic model of “know thyself” serves as our programmatic foundation for enabling children to develop a strong identity and become an insightful and compassionate member of society.  The Socratic concept of “γνώθι σε εαυτόν” (“know thyself”) helps us to place great emphasis on children’s identity and character development, as we ask children to reflect on their own feelings and behavior as well as those of others.  We also borrow pedagogical concepts and practice from the work of Loris Malaguzzi, founder of the Reggio-Emilia approach to child development, as we encourage children in their search for making meaning and making their learning visible.