The Pre-Primary Centre, headed by the Headmistress, Mrs. Saira Paul, functions as an independent wing, adjacent to St.Thomas Residential School. This section has a very congenial and nurturing atmosphere, that fosters the healthy and happy development of the kindergarteners. The Pre-Primary Centre is a common platform for admission into the three schools on campus. There are 22 divisions in all,with a total strength of 880 students. Out of these, four divisions function in the Kumarapuram Campus. The little ones thrive under the tender loving care of experienced teachers and the support staff provided for their welfare.
The essence of education is knowledge seeking rather than knowledge feeding or rote learning. To quote the German born American physician and author, Martin H Fischer, “All the world is a laboratory to the inquiring mind ”, the impetus for this begins at the grass root level of the kindergarten. The students are taught, by the play-way method,to find themselves and discover the world around them. There is an all round exposure to all the, most important facets of a pre-schooler. Their mental as well as physical energies need to be equally stimulated. Their intrinsic curiosity is amply fed, as they are given wings to explore, create and experience life,within the well established safety boundaries of the Pre-Primary Centre. The students seeking admission to Pre-Primary 1 and Pre-Primary 2 are required to have completed three years and six months and four years and six months ,respectively, by the month of June.
At the PP1 level, focus is on developing their motor skills through a series of activities. We use smart classes which stimulate their audio visual senses, the exclusive computer lab enables the children to learn and understand simple computer concepts with hands on experience. Drawing, colouring, craft, music, dance, organised games, and plenty of free play, in the well-equipped playground, all contribute to making their day full of fun-filled learning.
At St. Thomas Pre Primary Centre, the study pattern is formulated in such a manner that the mind of each child, born into diverse situations and circumstances and endowed with unique intelligence levels, attitudes and aptitude, is aroused to seek the information, knowledge and skills that are required to step out confidently into the larger world. The section has the unique privilege of having textbooks and activity books compiled by their own teachers, custom made to attain the specific educational goals and philosophy of the Mar Thoma Church Educational Society.
Reading – Which includes recognition, recall, pronunciation.
Writing – Comprising hand movement and eye co-ordination.
Arithmetic – Play of numbers, figures shapes and sizes.
Natural Science – Which develop a spirit of enquiry.
Social Science – Makes him aware of the larger community he is a part of.
At St.Thomas Pre Primary Education Centre, the study pattern is designed to suit the individual needs of each child. They are trained to step out into the larger world with confidence and to acquire the skills required for their future.
PP I & PP II : 9.20 am to 2.20 pm.
Visiting time for the parents : 2.30 pm - 3.30 pm.
Emphasis is laid on oral work. Children are given the opportunities to explore and experience the environment. An exclusive computer lab for the pre-primary children enables the small children to learn and understand concepts with hands on experience. Classroom learning is reinforced by means of the visual electronic media. The curriculum comes as an attractive package in which the academic lessons are interfaced with art, craft, music, sports and even picnics so as to stimulate the interests of the tiny tots. The section have the unique privilege of learning from the text books compiled by their own teachers. The PP I and PP II children (those who stay back after class hours) can have special music and dance coaching from 1.20 pm.
Teachers assess the children in both scholastic and non-scholastic areas daily and reports are sent to the parents twice a year. Formal examinations are not conducted. No grades/ranks are given, promotion is based on the overall progress of the child.
In order to ensure the mental health and grow reading habits in students, there is a library exclusively for the pre-primary children. This library provides all kinds of children category books. Reading books ensures that your child is exposed to vocabulary on different topics, which means they hear words or phrases which they may not hear otherwise in their day to day lives. Reading affects their brain activity and may just give them that boost they need to support and promote their early reading skills.
Celebrations and Talents
The children take part in various celebrations during the course of the year. The hidden talents of the children are exposed and developed by the teachers. All the children are motivated to take part in the talent display program whereby they get rid of stage fright. This is not a competition, so it is only the participation of the children that counts.
There is an indoor playroom which is well furnished with toys meant for the development of mental abilities like the co-ordination of muscles, and learning and differentiating shapes and colours. Craft work helps to develop the locomotive skills.
Health Card System
Health cards are maintained for the PP I students on the basis of a comprehensive checkup by the medical specialists.
In order to foster a healthy parent-teacher relationship, the parents meet the class teacher at the end of each term.
The total number of teachers is 28 including the Headmistress, Music teacher and Computer teacher. During the first two weeks of the academic year, the teachers reach the school sufficiently early to receive the children.
An efficient transportation system operates to take the students to and from the school punctually and comfortably. Buses ply 33 different routes, making St. Thomas accessible to students from every part of the city and its suburbs.
Apart from cleaning the classrooms and the surroundings, the ayahs remain in the park when the children are at play. Besides this, the ayahs are allotted duties in the park before and after class hours, in front of the main gate of the PP section to receive the children. They also escort the children from and to the bus bay.