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A 4-K Program for All Children

Oconto Falls Elementary School

Oconto Falls Elementary School (Oconto Falls, WI). The Oconto Falls School District was one of the first in Wisconsin to develop a 4K program for all children. The OFES Early Childhood (EC) and 4K program curriculum is tightly aligned to the Wisconsin Model Early Learning Standards (WMELS) and provides children with a play and sensory-based learning environment. In recent years, as the academic rigor of K-12 education has increased, the EC, 4K, and 5K teachers have collaborated to ensure that CCSS-based learning targets inform the WMELS-based instruction at the EC and 4K level so that children are well prepared for subsequent grade-levels. The positive impact of our EC and 4K programs is most apparent as children are transitioning to 5K with higher level skills and readiness to continue learning. In relation to basic reading skills, 1st through 5th grade teachers devote approximately 20-30 minutes per day to word study instruction. Pre-kindergarten (4K) and kindergarten (5K) devote approximately 20-30 minutes daily to explicit phonological awareness instruction/activities, using the Literacy Link Program. This instruction is reinforced by specialists during interventions to target areas of phonological need.

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