Pomme d’Api offers French Immersion Morning classes and Francophone afternoon classes. In any one class, children between the ages of 3 and 5 can enroll, however, every child must belong to a class with a fixed schedule of either 2, 3 or 5 days (morning classes) or 3 days (afternoon classes). One afternoon class a week is an “open class” where any one child from any of our programs may enroll.
Your child can enroll in one of the following programs:
2 Day Morning Class: Child attends school Tuesday and Thursday morning from 9am - noon.
3 Day Morning Class: Child attends school Monday, Wednesday and Friday morning from 9am - noon.
5 Day Morning Class: You can enroll your child in both the 2 Day and 3 Day morning Class to attend school 5 mornings a week, Monday - Friday from 9 am - noon. If you do so you receive a discount on your tuition fee.
3 Day Afternoon Class - Francophone: Child attends school Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoon from 1 pm - 4 pm.
Thursday Afternoon Open Class: Children enrolled in any of our programs may also attend school on Thursday afternoon. The class is limited to 20 children and enrollment is on a first come first serve basis.
*The morning class commences at 9am, but we acknowledge that for parents dropping older siblings off at school at 9 am, it is difficult to be on time. The first 15 minutes of the morning class constitutes a grace period of welcoming the children into the classroom for free play and so you may drop off your child between 9am and 9.15am.
We accept children from 30 months of age who are potty trained.
What happens in class?
The morning and afternoon classes follow a familiar routine, which incorporates free play, directed activities, arts and crafts projects prepared and guided by the teachers, circle time (including opportunities for show and tell) and snack time.
In addition to the daily class structure, students are exposed to monthly and seasonal themes and activities. Classes will also have occasional field trips or in-class events that feature special performers or introduce students to a new theme in an engaging manner.
In the beginning of the school year our teachers work intentionally on bringing a harmonious atmosphere in the classroom, supporting students experiencing separation anxiety, teaching problem solving, respect for one another (sharing, taking turns, cleaning after oneself etc.), and following routines. This is done through in a cooperative play environment while acknowledging every child’s individual development.
As the school year moves on we continue to develop social skills, but also start encouraging students to complete some "work," focusing on fine motor skills and activities that will develop pre-math, pre-reading, pre-writing and logic. Sometimes the “work” will be done individually and sometimes groups of children will be engaged in various projects together. These activities will be adjusted to each child’s age and individual developmental level.
Children are expected to attend Pomme d’Api for two years and it is recommended that the amount of time spent at Pomme d’Api increases in the second year if your child attended 2 days a week in their first year. Increased time at Pomme d’Api will allow the teachers to work in a targeted manner with your child on preparing them for elementary school start, both socially and through play based academic learning.
Students who graduate from Pomme d’Api attend Anglophone or Francophone schools in the public or private sector, as well as a variety of immersion programs. Attending Pomme d’Api does not give your child priority registration at any one elementary school, but if your child is enrolling in a French Immersion program or a Francophone school, their experience and exposure to French at Pomme d’Api will give them a head start when transitioning to elementary school programs. In addition, regularly attending pre-school is a great way to prepare your child for starting school by getting them used to playing and learning in a structured setting with a larger group of peers.
French in the classroom
Throughout the school year French is used in the class room and children are exposed to the language in accordance with their individual needs and abilities. Some children will already understand or speak some French when they start school and some come from Francophone families. Some will come from Anglophone famililes with no experience of speaking French at home.
We incorporate French into the children’s daily experience of coming to class through repetition of phrases and expressions during our routines. From the start we sing our transitions in French, and French songs will be sung at circle time over and over again. It is important to know that we speak French to children in accordance with their ability prior to enrolling at Pomme d’Api, meaning that a child who has no prior mastery will be gradually introduced to French, whereas a child who comes from a Francophone family will be addressed by teachers solely in French. As such, all children in the classroom will be continuously exposed to French when spoken to them or around them. We want all our students to feel comfortable and understood at school, whether they are new to French or fluent.
The Francophone afternoon program is open to all, but many families who are Francophone or where one parent speaks French will choose this program. Classes are conducted entirely in French and there is a general expectation that the child will experience some support at home speaking French. The teachers will work with non-Francophone families who enroll their children in the Francophone program to integrate into the class so that no child is isolated due to language barriers or unable to follow the curriculum and teacher instructions.