Why Maple Bear?
At Maple Bear students become:
CURIOUS: Passionate about knowledge and learning.
CONFIDENT: Deeply aware of their talents and potential.
INDEPENDENT: Prepared to lead their own lives, and decide their own paths and destiny.
ANALYTICAL: Able to think freely & shape their own beliefs.
FLEXIBLE: Adaptable in a world where change is the only constant.
CREATIVE: Always motivated and enthusiastic about asking “what if?”
PREPARED: In possession of the knowledge and tools necessary for an outstanding performance at college, at work and in life, in their home country or abroad.
GLOBAL: Bilingual and culturally literate for a global future.
In 2018, the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) ranked Canada #1 in the English-speaking world in science, math and reading. As in 2012, 2015, and again in 2018, Canada maintained strong performance and outperformed other English-speaking countries in all three evaluations.
According to the OECD’s Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), Canada consistently out ranks the United States and the United Kingdom, often by significant margins.
In fact, Canada ranks ahead of the systems in the US and the UK because the OECD measures an entire country’s system, not just hot spots of excellence which are not accessible to all due to geography or cost. In the vast Canadian public system, every child has access to quality schools.
Canada excels not only in studies in the English language, but is also a world leader in bilingual education.
Bilingual education is the use of two different languages in the classroom instruction of academic content. At Maple Bear, students study all academic subjects in either their native language or English, depending on the subject and grade level.
Students don’t just memorize vocabulary in a Maple Bear classroom. This is a key difference between the programs offered at Maple Bear and the ESL training offered at other schools claiming to offer a bilingual education.
Furthermore, at Maple Bear, students begin learning English in pre-school using a student-focussed English immersion learning system based on Canadian educational pedagogy and best practices.
There have been concerns that teaching children two languages at once only confuses them. Fortunately, there has been much research—much of it conducted by Canadians—which shows that far from handicapping children, bilingual education can offer benefits from infancy to old age.
So what are the benefits of bilingual education for young learners?
For a start, it’s very good for English-language development, a goal of many of our parents who chose Maple Bear for their children. Young learners have also been shown to have:
- better concentration, analytical skills and multi-tasking capabilities;
- they learn to read sooner than monolingual students;
- they have an increased sense of self-worth and identity;
- they have the ability to live abroad and learn other foreign languages later in life;
- enjoy exposure to more than one culture which leads to a global perspective.
Numerous studies have confirmed that being bilingual actually makes a person smarter as it has a profound effect on the brain, improving cognitive skills and sharpening memory.
Besides the obvious wide gap in the price of tuition at a Maple Bear school compared to an international one, Maple Bear conforms to local education regulations, offering fully articulated local curricula in addition to the Canadian program.
This opens up many more educational options for Maple Bear students: they are prepared and capable of moving easily between the Canadian system offered by Maple Bear and their own country’s system and can do so at any time during the K-12 years. They are also prepared for entry into a university at home as well as abroad if they so choose and are not tied to just one system.
Many Maple Bear schools offer Bear Care, an infant care & early learning program that accepts infants from 6 weeks to 24 months of age.
Bear Care recognizes that the infant is a capable and active learner. The infant does not need to be “taught” lessons or content. The infant is respected as an already very competent learner, and is allowed, and encouraged, to explore, play, discover and practice in ways, and on a schedule, that best fits his or her emerging abilities, interests and skills.
Schedules are arranged to best meet the needs of the infant. The infant’s day will have consistent and predictable routines, few transitions, and lots of time for repetition and practice. Infant programs cultivate an “unhurried” atmosphere.
Maple Bear provides learning environments that keep the infant safe while allowing for exploration and discovery. Spaces and places have developmentally appropriate toys and furnishings that will accommodate the needs of crawlers, walkers and almost-walkers.
Maple Bear recognizes the importance of the family. Daily communication between parents and program staff ensures that the well-being of the child remains a priority.
Maple Bear schools benefit from our distinguished academic faculty of Canadian trainers, curriculum writers and quality assurance personnel.
The Maple Bear program is a living, breathing curriculum that is constantly being updated. We have a large faculty of experienced teachers and education administrators that we draw upon to develop new curriculum, new training materials and methodologies and school policies. We undertake periodic student assessment at schools to benchmark student performance.
Maple Bear provides continual professional training and support for our teachers. Trainers from the Maple Bear Faculty mentor teachers and introduce them to the latest pedagogies and instructional strategies. We also have partnerships with the Province of Manitoba’s Department of Education as well as the University of Winnipeg where Maple Bear teachers can take courses leading them to a Masters in Education.
Every Maple Bear school undergoes an annual inspection that covers everything from safety equipment to classroom performance. On a regular basis and drawing on the experience of training staff in schools, we review and update our curriculum to reflect the latest developments in the field of education and changes in local regulations and requirements. All Maple Bear schools have clean, secure facilities and low student to teacher ratios.
Our goal is to establish quality schools that will provide an excellent education experience to students for generations to come.
The Maple Bear Program
All instruction in the Maple Bear Elementary School follows educational principles which have made Canadian practice so successful:
Outcomes are defined: Learning is targeted to achieve very specific learning outcomes. It is clear what the children need to learn.
Canadian performance standards are applied: Canadian performance standards determine the learning outcomes. Maple Bear students are expected to achieve performance levels similar to Canadians.
Curriculum development for English-language subjects is done in Canada by Canadian experts.
Canadian style teaching strategies are implemented: Canadian teaching strategies encourage student independence, strong literacy skills, higher level thinking and problem solving.
A sophisticated set of learning resources are used: Learning resources include books, manipulative materials, visual materials, electronic media, and computer technology.
Assessment of student learning is based on Canadian standards. In all cases, Canadian programming exceeds the requirements of local elementary education authorities in each country.
Bear Care Infant Care & Early Learning
Bear Care Infant Care & Early Learning is a Maple Bear program for children from 6 weeks to 24 months of age. All Maple Bear bilingual, immersion programs are modelled upon best practices in current Canadian early childhood education and Bear Care is no exception.
The Bear Care program respects that all infants are competent learners, and it is designed to educate the whole child – physically, cognitively, emotionally and socially. At Bear Care infants are placed at the centre of the curriculum, and encouraged to play, explore, discover and practice in ways that best fit their individual emerging abilities, interests and skills, with a schedule that is organized to meet their individual needs.
The Bear Care program recognizes the importance of the family and prioritizes daily communications between parents and teachers. Developing strong positive attachments between infants and the Bear Care “Educarer”, the highly trained caregiving adults who look after the infants in the Bear Care program, is at the heart of the program. This focus allows the infants to develop positive and healthy attitudes to a setting outside of their home.
The Bear Care program’s warm, welcoming and nurturing learning environment is designed to keep the infant safe while allowing for exploration and discovery. Spaces and places have developmentally appropriate toys and furnishings that will accommodate the needs of newborns, crawlers, walkers and almost-walkers. Bear Care infants are always learning.
Preschool Core Curriculum
Every child deserves the best possible start in life and the support that enables them to fulfill their potential. Children develop quickly in the early years and a child’s experiences between birth and age five have a major impact on their future opportunities. Maple Bear sets high standards to ensure children’s readiness for elementary school. Maple Bear gives children the broad range of knowledge and skills that provides the right foundation for good progress through school and life.
English Language Arts
By the end of Senior Kindergarten children will communicate effectively in English by listening and speaking, will have a good understanding of alphabetical symbols, will be able to read basic text in English, will be able to use phonic strategies to approach new words, will be capable of using writing strategies appropriate for beginners, and finally, will be able to use and respond to media.
Personal and Social Development
Children will learn to share, to respect others, to listen, and to understand that people have different talents and functions in our society.
Science and Technology
Children will demonstrate curiosity about the natural world, demonstrate knowledge of characteristics of common materials, identify cycles in nature using techniques of observation, and work with others in using the computer in all aspects of their studies.
Children will understand colour, shape and use of media to express ideas. They will be able to describe responses to music, art, drama and dance.
Physical skills and well-being
Children will develop physical skills (such as balance and flexibility), an awareness of health and safety rules, an understanding of sharing, taking turns, cooperation and socially acceptable behaviour.
Children will become problem solvers. They will learn about patterns in the environment, number concepts, comparisons, sets, basic formal operations (e.g. adding and subtracting), 2-D and 3-D objects, simple graphs, basic measurements, estimation and basic probability.
Language development and acquisition
Children enter Maple Bear School with some basis in their home language. In learning their first language children pass through several stages in predictable order: listening, developing understanding, speaking, reading and writing. Successive stages begin while preceding stages are still in development. When Maple Bear children learn English as a new language their development in English proceeds through the same stages in the same sequence as in learning their first language. Research shows that learning two languages at an early age offers both linguistic and cognitive advantages.
Immersion methodology is used in Maple Bear schools to develop competence in English. This means that children learn to listen, speak, read, and write in English by surrounding them with conversation and instruction in English. Children learn in English right from the first day.
Literacy, which includes listening, speaking, reading and writing, is one of the most important goals of the Maple Bear program.
Elementary & Middle Years Core Curriculum
Maple Bear has developed an excellent, hands on, rigorous and relevant elementary curriculum in each subject area based on the highly successful Canadian approach to learning and instruction. Maple Bear encourages the development of the child’s basic skill in literacy, numeracy, science, technology, analysis, problem solving, information processing and computing, Critical and creative thinking skills are promoted and encouraged so that children can be successful in today’s world. The Elementary Program is designed to educate the whole child – physically, intellectually, emotionally, and socially.
The Maple Bear Elementary and Middle Years Programs require a minimum of 50% instruction in English. The remaining portion of the program is conducted in the home language. Subjects taught in English include English Language Arts, Mathematics and Science. Instruction in the home language, History, Geography, Physical Education, the Arts, and other subjects is conducted in the students’ first language.
English Language Arts
At all grades, the focus is on acquiring language and literacy skills through listening, speaking, reading and writing. Students learn to read and produce a wide range of texts, including media, transactional (letters, e-mails, etc.), and tertiary texts. The level of sophistication grows with the advancing grade levels. All classrooms must be literacy-rich environments.
The themes of number sense and numeration, measurement, geometry and spatial sense, patterning and algebra, data management and probability are developed in increasing complexity at each grade level. The program emphasizes problem solving, understanding concepts, application of procedures and communication about mathematics.
The science program emphasizes enquiry and the use of the scientific method in science classes. At each grade level increasingly complex topics are studied from the fields of biology, physics, chemistry and environmental science. The emphasis is on experimentation and application rather than memorization.
High School Program
The Maple Bear High School program provides a combination of locally required subjects taught in the local language and a number of Maple Bear curriculum courses created by Canadian high school experts taught in English or French. Students are offered Ontario accredited optional courses as part of their high school program. This means that a Maple Bear student graduates with a local diploma as well as an official Maple Bear certificate which specifies which official Canadian courses were completed.
High School program details are customized for each host country. For example, in some countries high school includes Grades 9-12. In other countries, High School includes Grades 10-12. In either case, Maple Bear works within local regulation to devise a high school program which provides graduation to local colleges and universities as well as strong preparation for entry into Canadian or other international universities.
Local courses are taught by locally qualified teachers. Official Canadian courses are taught by certified Canadian teachers. All Maple Bear High School teachers receive Maple Bear training to ensure that the teaching strategies in all subjects meet the Canadian standard.