Every milestone starts with the first step. Reality starts with a dream. Innovation starts with imagination.
Twenty-one years ago, Southville International School and Colleges (SISC) started with the dream to offer an international preschool program that would cater to the multiple intelligences of students.
That dream was realized – as SISC’s first batch of graduates eventually graduated from top world-ranked universities. The rest as they say is history, as SISC eventually expanded each year to offer genuine international education from preschool to college.
This year, SISC takes a glimpse of its hopeful beginnings and looks forward to improving the early childhood education landscape by launching its S.T.A.R. Campus on Elizalde St., BF Homes Parañaque. The S.T.A.R. Campus is a non-traditional preschool which responds to the demand of today’s parents for an innovative learning environment with caring and well-trained teachers and a stimulating curriculum that encourages the child’s independence, individuality and creativity.
The S.T.A.R. Campus takes its name from Southville’s ingenious S.T.A.R. Curriculum which stands for Stanford Reading and Math Program, Technology-Assisted Instruction, Arts-Enriched Program, and Responsible Behavior Development Program.
In this non-traditional curriculum framework, multiple intelligences, learning styles, interests, and readiness of students are considered in the delivery of instruction. To ensure the holistic development of students, lesson plans and instruction are premised on brain-based learning principles such as Understanding by Design (UBD) and Differentiated Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment (DCIA) and home-grown programs such as Strategic Program for Emergent Literacy through Learning Shops (S.P.E.L.L.S.) and 6Qs Program.
The Stanford Reading and Math Program is a well-thought out program to pave way to an improved approach to teaching Reading and Math to children starting at 2 years old. Stanford encompasses strategic teaching accelerated and non-traditional curriculum framework for the optimum and rational development of young learners, follows international standards from the State of Pennsylvania Department of Education. This program offers developmentally appropriate activities and learning experiences for young learners to become prepared for the challenges of primary education.
Technology-Assisted Instruction utilizes e-classrooms, E-learning facilities such as LCD projectors and computers with early childhood educational software. This makes teaching concepts and skills to children more creative and effective. With the fast advancement of technology, young learners get hooked on easily to activities or presentations through software games or programs.
With the Arts-Enriched Curriculum, teachers utilize the Project Approach, which is based on the Reggio Emilia philosophy. This philosophy in Early Childhood Education originated in Italy in a town called Reggio Emilia and was founded by Loris Malaguzzi. This approach to teaching children emphasizes respect for each child’s ideas, feelings, interests and abilities; understanding the relationships of concepts developing critical thinking among children; utilization of art as the main medium of expressing learning, and; documentation of children’s works as they go through each phase of learning. With this kind of approach, teachers are not the sole owners of knowledge who impart them to children; they are the facilitators and co-builders of knowledge.
S.P.E.L.L.S. is a home-grown teaching-learning technology that uses learning shops. It stands for Strategic Program for Emergent Literacy through Learning Shops. This program provides young children with hands-on learning both in academics and values.
The 6Qs Program refers to the development of the Success Quotient of students early on by developing their Diligence Quotient, Intelligence Quotient, Reading Quotient, Emotional Quotient, and Computer Technology Quotient.
With SISC’s twin thrusts on academic and values excellence, the S.T.A.R. curriculum also emphasizes on Responsible Behavior Development Program. Students are equipped with positive, strong values necessary for building character.
As SISC turns more of its dreams into realities in the coming years, what will remain consistent is its commitment to develop learners who will be movers of society and who will make a difference in the 21st century.