Pre-Kindergarten Program

Our Pre-K program  teaches the children the necessary skills to succeed in kindergarten. Name writing, letter and sound recognition, number recognition and concept, and pre-reading skills are incorporated into all activities. The Pre-K classroom is print-rich: around the room are words, pictures, and signs to help and encourage the children to recognize many sight words, and to relate them to their knowledge of the written word.  The all important kindergarten skill of being able to listen to directions/instruction and then work independently is mastered.

In Pre-K,  abstract learning is equally as comfortable as concrete learning; concepts, ideas, and the ability to express feelings come easily to four year olds.

All gross motor skills are mastered and can be used with total body control, if sometimes a bit recklessly!

The children can practice “kindergarten” skills: skipping, hopping on one foot, following three or four verbal commands in correct order, catching and throwing a ball. By this age, purposeful play is expected; and making a mess to simply make a mess is not the four year old’s behavior. Group play is cooperative, team games are organized by the children themselves, and the rules of the game are understood and followed – These rules can change without warning, of course, but all the children seem to adapt easily.

The children learn through these games and through daily conversations and activities, to take turns, wait for their turn, listen to directions and respect the rights of others to think, feel, and act differently.

Social skills are becoming quite sophisticated, and as the children continue to mature so does their ability to travel the sometimes difficult road of friendship. Friends are very important at this age, but while the three year old has very little ability to balance friendship and power, the Pre-K children are adept at this. Fours  have mastered the art of manipulation. They can convince just about anyone to follow their lead by using several different methods: being very, very, nice – being very, very, bossy; or being very, very exclusive. It’s generally the girls who take these skills to a highly developed level. Boys are much more inclusive, pretty much anyone can join their games. Social status is very precarious in Pre-K as leaders fall in and out of favor; but it all works out by the end of the day.

Pre-K circle times are a comfortable venue for sharing ideas and expressing thoughts. Even though the children often drift off topic, conversation is always enthusiastic and entertaining. Art projects require far greater fine motor skills: tracing and cutting skills, and independent pencil/paper work. Cognitive small group time focuses on activities which prepare all the children for the expectations of kindergarten programs.

The curriculum in our Pre-K class and in our Pre-K+ class thoroughly prepare our children for a successful kindergarten experience both academically and socially.    Both classes encourage their students to listen, think, and question; to be comfortable expressing their own ideas and to listen to and be respectful of the ideas of their peers.  We want them to be open to new ideas and to be excited and eager to meet the kindergarten world which awaits.