Our preschool is a full day academic program. Our classroom is divided into eleven learning centers. Our centers include Science, Art, Library, Puzzles, Sensory, Music, Blocks, An Active Area, Dramatic Play and a Puppet Stage. Each area is supplied with different activities for the children to choose from that target developmental goals in each area. We work hard to make sure that each area has age and ability appropriate activities for all the children in our classroom. We believe that a well developed environment acts as a great motivator to challenge children and stimulate learning. Large blocks of time are set aside in our schedule everyday for the children to be able to make choices for themselves. Because as early childhood professionals we understand that young children learn best through play we strive to make play a big part of their day. Teaches use this time to engage the children by asking questions about what they are doing, helping them read a book, writing the child's thoughts for them in the book they are making, helping them feed the Guiney pig, frog or fish, water plants, talk about the difference in the rocks or where the shells come from, create different art or sensory experiences for them to explore, taking part in a puppet show, making a pie in dramatic play, teaching new cords on the guitar, teaching them to settle conflicts or negotiate for what they want with their peers, it is a very busy productive part of our schedule.
Our outside classroom is connected directly to our indoor classroom so the children can choose to play outside or inside during this time. Giving them lots of outside time everyday.
During our group time each morning we do a little stretching and some fun aerobic activity to wake up our brains. Then we verbally practice some skills. We sing one of our alphabet songs, count to 30 in English and 10 in Spanish, practice our colors and shapes with fun games, we sing about the days of the week and songs that teach counting by fives and tens, we say the pledge of allegiance and sing our class song.
We focus on one letter a week making it with play dough or drawing it in sand or painting on fabric or cutting it out of cardstock and decorating it. We practice making the letter with sign language, we identify who's name starts with the letter and what words begin with the letters sound. We use several teaching tools to help the children relate with the phonetic concept including; froggy phonics, zoo phonics and critter crew. We learn the importance of the written word by reading, we have literacy all around the class room to help the children understand that letters make words and words have meaning. We be sure to keep the activities that we choose appropriate for the children's age and abilities. We stay informed of kindergarten requirements in dist. # 91 and Dist. # 93 to be sure that our students are ready for kindergarten socially, emotionally and cognitively.
We theme teach in our classroom so each month we learn about a different topic. We try to base these topics on themes that the children have shown interest in, we always include their input when making our choice. We add toys and activities to our centers to support our theme. This also insures that the children have new and interesting things to explore in class each month. We decorate our classroom with art and craft projects that the children create based on the theme for that month.
Our classroom is 2400 square feet, its huge. It has two bathrooms for the children, two sinks at child height for hand washing, a tooth brushing station and a drinking fountain. We have central heating and air conditioning for comfort. Large windows for natural light and ceiling fans for air circulation.
Free Choice Learning
Free Choice Learning
Preschool Class Schedule