When is my child eligible for Kindergarten?
Children who are four years of age on or before March 1 may register in Kindergarten for the upcoming school year.
For the 2016-2017 school year, this means children born between March 2, 2011 and March 1, 2012 are eligible for Kindergarten.
How do I register?
Our schools start taking registrations for Kindergarten in the spring.
We recommend that you register your child for Kindergarten in person at your local school, however there is an online registration form available if you are unable to register in person at this time. To find out what Northern Lights public schools are located near you, click HERE.
You can also register at any of the Kindergarten open houses that our schools hold in May (check the top of this page for dates and times).
Your child’s proof of age and legal name (birth certificate or passport) and proof of your address with you are required to register your child in Kindergarten. Please bring them with you when you fill out the registration form.
Our Enhanced Kindergarten Experience
All Northern Lights elementary schools offer a full-day Kindergarten program five days a week!
Our schools provide our Kindergarten students with an Enhanced Kindergarten Experience to help prepare them for Grade 1 and a lifetime of learning.
The Government of Alberta provides school boards with funding for students to attend a half-day Kindergarten program. More information on Early Childhood Services programs is available HERE.
The curriculum provided by Alberta Education for Kindergarten focuses on seven different areas:
Early Literacy - Children learn to use language to express thoughts, feeling and experiences;
Early Numeracy - Children use their growing understanding of numbers to make sense of their world;
Environment and Community Awareness - Children use their five senses to explore the world around them;
Citizenship and Identity - Students start to learn how to be good citizens;
Personal and Social Responsibility - Children learn to work and play with others;
Physical Skills and Well-Being - Children learn to make good choices in their life;
Creative Expression - Children express feelings and ideas through music, drama and art.
The Northern Lights Enhanced Kindergarten Experience means students receive additional instruction in all areas of the Alberta curriculum. That means more time on literacy and numeracy, as well as more time learning through play. We know play is a critical component of early learning. In addition to helping children learn, it also helps children develop socially, emotionally and physically.
In Northern Lights, we also enhance learning in any areas that we identify as we deepen our knowledge of our students, their areas of strength and areas that require growth.
Not all students arrive on the first day of Kindergarten with the same knowledge, skills and abilities. One of the things that we do to determine how best to meet the needs of our students is to assess how each child is developing in an ongoing manner. This is done using a variety of methods including observations, discussions and formative and summative assessments. This allows us to tailor the learning environment to help students build on their strengths as well as learning new skills in areas that may not be as well developed.
Early Years Evaluation
One of the assessment tools NLSD uses is the Early Years Evaluation, also known as EYE. The evaluation is done through observing children in the learning environment. The EYE assesses five areas:
Awareness of Self and Environment – this is the child’s ability to think and talk about their world and make connections with home and community experiences;
Social Skills and Approaches to Learning – this is the child’s attentiveness and persistence and whether they show signs of social and emotional connectedness with others;
Cognitive Skills – this includes the child’s ability to solve problems, recognize shapes and patterns, understand basic mathematical operations and emergent literacy skills, such as awareness of print and letter-sound correspondence;
Language and Communication – this is the child’s understanding of spoken works as well as their ability to express thoughts and feelings to others;
Physical Development – this is the child’s use of fine motor skills (small movements involving fingers in coordination with sight) and gross motor skills (large movements involving arms, legs and body).
EYE not only allows us to provided targeted instruction to individual students, it also allows us to identify trends within our schools, communities and division. This allows us to tailor our program and focus on areas that have been identified through the assessment.