The Bezos Academy Curriculum ensures that a high-quality learning experience is offered to each child and that developmental outcomes meet or exceed the national standards for early childhood education.
Our Curriculum has four key areas: child centered, culturally responsive, standards-based, and Montessori-inspired. These four areas drive our decisions on what is taught in our classrooms.
Key Curriculum Areas
The child is at the center of every Curriculum decision made, and we put the needs of the child above all else. Our Curriculum meets the child where they are and prioritizes all areas of child development. We integrate support for diverse and multilingual learners throughout the Curriculum to provide an equitable experience for all children.
Children thrive when the curriculum is engaging and personally reflective of their lived experiences. At Bezos Academy, we take time to get to know each child and family. Every child’s culture and strengths are identified and nurtured to promote student achievement and a sense of well-being.
Our Curriculum is aligned to research-based standards for student success. These standards allow us to track developmental milestones and inform individualized instruction. Frequently monitoring progress of the whole child enables educators to focus on each individual child and make appropriate curricular decisions.
Core Montessori elements are the foundation of the Bezos Academy Curriculum. Our educators are trained in the Montessori method, and each classroom has a full set of Montessori materials. The Montessori approach allows every child to develop naturally — to learn and grow at their own pace. Our Curriculum will also borrow from other pedagogies to learn, invent, and improve our ability to support every child’s development.
In our classrooms, children follow their interests and engage in hands-on activities using scientifically prepared materials. This enhances a child’s intellectual achievement, social cohesion, and emotional regulation.
Areas of the Montessori curriculum that are present and visible in every Bezos Academy include:
Social-emotional learning (SEL) has a positive impact on a child’s success in school.1 The social-emotional well-being of every child is a guiding pillar of our Curriculum.
We facilitate developmentally appropriate social-emotional learning and support young children in expressing, understanding, and responding to feelings and emotions. Our teachers guide children to collaborate and build relationships, make friends, understand and respond to their feelings, set goals, build confidence and self-respect, and make effective and meaningful decisions.
Our language activities build knowledge, skills, and concepts necessary for literacy. Our Curriculum also encourages independence, collaboration, and joy in learning.
Bezos Academy’s language-rich environment supports children in developing strong literacy skills, a love of reading and writing, cultural competence, communication with multi-age peers, and the confidence to express their own creativity. Our teachers are prepared to support multilingual children and their English language development.
Math materials develop memory and abstraction of concepts through repeated use. Using concrete materials helps children learn complicated concepts by physically acting them out. This experience allows children to build a strong foundation and confidence in math before entering kindergarten.
Our students work on counting in a sequence and explore measurement by comparing the weight, feel, and size of different objects. Quantity is commonly associated with a symbol, and mathematical concepts such as the four basic operations, number facts, geometry, fractions, money, and time all are explored.
Practical life exercises are hands-on activities that teach specific skills — washing, scrubbing, sweeping, plant care, basic food preparation, and more. Children develop strong work habits, build their attention span, and access concentration and emotional regulation. Children gain coordination of their fine and gross motor skills while building independence in caring for themselves and the environment.
Young children learn by doing. As they move around their homes and communities, they gather information, ideas, and concepts through their senses, and they use this information to learn and grow in the world around them. Sensorial materials deconstruct this vast amount of information into easy-to-understand, concrete concepts.
Children experience sequencing, finding patterns, and indirect counting. In addition, they are introduced to multiple subject matters, including geometry, botany, and geography. The hands-on approach helps to develop fine motor skills and hand strength needed for writing.
Art, Music, and Movement
These activities support the development of fine and gross motor skills and promote creativity, imagination, and self-expression.
Children explore and experiment with child-friendly art materials and methods, such as painting, drawing, clay, tracing, and mosaics. Children also practice expressive techniques in drama, dance, music, and the visual arts, working individually, in small groups, and as a classroom.
Nature’s calming effect helps children who need a release of energy or a peaceful place to regulate their emotions. Our learning approach allows children to deepen their understanding, respect, and love of nature through play and exploration.
Every Bezos Academy has access to an outdoor environment that is prepared with purpose and care, providing a space for learning, exploration, creativity, fine and gross motor skills, joy, and imagination development. Children can spend time outside every day while at school.
Every Bezos Academy seeks to provide additional learning opportunities through local partnerships that support and enrich every child’s development.
- Joseph Durlak et al., “The impact of enhancing students’ social and emotional learning: A meta-analysis of school-based universal interventions,” Child Development, 82, 405–432, January/February 2011, https://www.casel.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/PDF-3-Durlak-Weissberg-Dymnicki-Taylor-_-Schellinger-2011-Meta-analysis.pdf.