An independent, coeducational PK-Grade 12 private school located in historic Fredericksburg, Virginia

Junior Kindergarten

Fredericksburg Academy private school junior kindergarten class paints

Ready to explore

Junior kindergarten students at Fredericksburg Academy learn through play in the classroom and in the natural world, to be best prepared for the next step in their education.

Responsive Classroom

All classrooms in our Lower School use this research-based teaching approach, which is based on the idea that children learn best when they have both academic and social-emotional skills. Responsive Classroom's guiding principle is that knowing the children we teach is as important as knowing the content we teach. Each class activity helps children learn the skills of cooperation, assertion, responsibility, empathy, and self-control.

Language Arts

Junior kindergartners learn about the use, value, and wonder of language throughout each day. Children:

  • foster communications skills through abundant opportunities for conversations, discussions, and negotiations
  • participate in shared reading experiences (stories, poems, songs, and finger plays) to develop listening, sequencing, comprehension, and vocabulary
  • learn the alphabet, how to write upper and lower case, letter sounds and blending in a comprehensive, multi-sensory program that correlates reading, handwriting, auditory and oral language skills

Math

Familiarity with numeracy and building confidence in problem-solving ability is central to creating a foundation for mathematical thinking. Children:

  • develop number sense through the study of numeration, sequencing and one to one correspondence. These skills are mastered through rug activities, toys, games, and art.
  • explore the concepts of time, measuring, tools, size, and money through playful and practical applications such as cooking, monitoring the daily schedule, playing grocery store, and experimenting at the sensory table
  • develop their knowledge of patterns and function through puzzles, patterning and the study of attributes

Science

Junior kindergartners explore science in a theme-based approach through inquiry-based activities that develop problem-solving skills.

Themes are one to two weeks in length and are relevant to what is happening in the world around the children. Science themes include:

  • seasons
  • pumpkins
  • plants
  • water
  • butterflies

Themes are explored through art, literature, dramatic play, field trips and visiting specialists. Children begin using the scientific method in hands-on activities, which include hypothesizing, experimenting, observing and recording.

Social Studies

Junior kindergartners explore social studies in a theme-based approach through inquiry-based activities that develop problem-solving skills.

Themes are one to two weeks in length and are relevant to what is happening in the world around the children. Social studies themes include:

  • family
  • Pilgrims and Indians
  • world holidays
  • community helpers

Themes are explored through art, literature, dramatic play, field trips and visiting specialists.

Art

Junior kindergartners deepen their understanding and appreciation of the visual arts by creating it themselves. Students:

  • build knowledge of colors, shapes, and materials
  • experiment with multiple media to create art
  • learn to control lines and shapes on paper with different brushes and tools
  • explore artwork, styles, and artists by using the classroom as gallery
  • show artwork in a student gallery for special events
  • get an introduction to stoneware clay and 3-D sculpture

Foreign Language and Culture

Children begin learning languages in Early Childhood at FA. We introduce a semester each of French and Spanish through songs, poems, games, and activities in a weekly class. They:

  • describe colors, families, body parts, and more
  • use simple expressions
  • learn about culture by talking about and experiencing traditions and events from around the world

Library

Literature is already a large part of FA's curriculum. The weekly visit to the library gives students the chance to further develop their respect and love for books. Students:

  • learn how illustrations support a story
  • experience how libraries support the work they do in the classroom
  • discuss the parts of a book
  • read award-winning books (e.g., Caldecott, King, and Belpre Awards) as examples of how literature is honored
  • choose a book they love (and take it back to their classroom)

Music and Movement

This weekly class lets children expand their love for music and rhythm. Students:

  • walk, gallop, skip, clap, and use hand and finger movements to build gross and fine motor skills
  • learn age-appropriate songs and dances that enhance classroom lessons
  • identify pitch by picking out high and low sounds
  • practice rhythms and play hand-held musical instruments
  • showcase their talents and self-confidence throughout the year in their own musical production and in all Lower School programs

Physical Education

Children learn the importance of a sound mind and sound body. In this weekly class, our students:

  • work on their motor skills through stretching, running, hopping, and learning some animal walks
  • play games to practice taking turns and learning boundaries
  • are introduced to the importance of physical activity and encouraged to learn age-appropriate skills

Technology

Students learn how to use technology safely and responsibly in their weekly computer lab visits and by using technology in the classroom with their teachers. Children:

  • visit the STEM lab to do art, engineering, and everything in between
  • work on fine motor and academic skills using the interactive projector
  • use tablets in their classroom to help with academic and social emotional skills, from learning letters and numbers to practicing sharing
  • learn the correct terminology for the computer's parts and practice using the mouse
  • practice finger skills such as clicking and dragging
  • navigate programs, and more

Program Snapshot

camera icon
  • Full-day and half-day options available
  • Lead teacher and associate teacher in each class
  • 16 students maximum per classroom
  • Language arts, math, science, and social studies are taught using thematic units
  • Children attend music and movement, art, physical education, foreign language (French and Spanish), and library and technology classes, as well as participating in nature/gardening activities
  • Participate in school traditions and have many opportunities to be connected to the greater school community
  • Perform three times on stage for parents and the FA community