JUNIOR SCHOOL (2-5 years) – play, play, and play! At 2-4 years of age, we are exploring the world around us, learning basic communication and preparing to start reading and writing with the help of touching and drawing games. All of it is integrated with gaming scenarios: a journey to a fairy-tale country or a search for a lost animal, a land of the dinosaurs, or a magic book.
At the age of 4-5, the games become more complex as we acquire the skills that enable us to see the alphabet in an abstract way, to hear the sounds of a word, to hear and see letters and combine them quickly. At the age of 5-6, we create conditions that foster a child’s desire to try and go on reading. There are a number of alphabet-based games, and at senior levels, crosswords, the “Words in Words” game, anagrams, rebuses, puzzles. We talk a lot and still structure lessons as quests with individual tasks providing keys to the final challenge and fitting into an exciting overall storyline.
MIDDLE SCHOOL (6-10 years). Rich and diverse language is key for both reading and writing. In order to develop spoken language skills, we continue to employ games, quests, debates, investigations, and other methods of interactive learning.
At the age of 6-7, we start gradually to write our own texts in various genres: letters, greeting cards, diary entries, instructions, comic strips, board games, stories and fairy-tales. Putting written language to practical uses is very important as it makes this skill meaningful.
At the age of 8-10, the children are gradually and non-intrusively introduced to elements of linguistic analysis and spelling rules.
SENIOR SCHOOL From the age of 11 onwards, we study “diverse Russian” by reading short excerpts written in different historical periods, analysing their style and plot and attempting to imitate them. We learn to invent our own stories and tell them in an engaging manner. We still play a lot of language games. We work on spelling and pay attention to differences between written and spoken forms, always presenting it through a lens of academic reasoning.