Christ Episcopal Preschool offers a first school experience for two-, three- and four-year-old children. The Preschool program is dedicated to the development of the whole child. All activities are developmentally appropriate, and children learn through inquiry and exploration.
The Preschool program emphasizes developmentally appropriate learning activities and problem-solving skills. Learning is viewed as an interactive process. Preschoolers use materials and engage in activities that are meaningful to them. The school day consists of a rich variety of activities, including readiness skills for reading, math, social studies and science; discussions; outdoor play and story time.
Children's social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development are nurtured and encouraged so that they develop self-esteem and independence. Children may be grouped by age, in mixed-age groups, and/or by developmental level.
An inquiry-based curriculum simply put is learning through personal investigation.
An old-adage states:
Tell me and I forget
Show me and I remember
Involve me and I understand
The last part of this statement is the essence of inquiry-based learning. Teachers and children work together to explore, ask questions, discuss observations and seek answers about everyday experiences. Inquiry-based learning combines active learning, inquiry and play. The role of the teacher is to provide rich lessons, which provoke children's natural curiosity.
Preschool 2's (The Turtles' Class)
The two-year-old class offers a flexible yet consistent program where children learn the life lessons of sharing, taking turns, and listening to others. These skills foster self-regulation, self-confidence, and empathy. CES teachers carefully help children build a sense of trust in new adult and peer relationships. Trusting relationships are essential for a happy and secure child.
In addition to supporting their social and emotional growth, teachers in this classroom work closely with the children to support their rapidly-developing receptive and expressive language. They also introduce the early stages of writing by allowing the children to practice creative representation. This practice happens in the art and housekeeping centers where there are a variety of materials and props. Using these tools, they can practice creating, role playing and storytelling. Mathematics instruction begins in this class, too. Children begin grouping and classifying objects using attributes such as color and texture. These lessons serve as the foundation for more advanced mathematics instruction in the preschool threes and prekindergarten classes.
Along with these classroom-based activities, the two-year-old children enjoy weekly visits from the music teacher, and engage in hands-on science activities in the preschool garden. The outside playground offers lots of space for extending the indoor centers and allowing time for the children to use both their large and small motor skills. Designed with a large sandbox, two playhouses, climbing equipment, riding toys, a garden and a large collection of other outdoor play equipment, the children spend a lot of time outdoors learning about the world in which they live.
Sample thematic units may include:
September –Transportation, Friends
October—Fall, Apples (with a family field trip to an apple orchard)
February—Penguins, Friendship, Valentine’s Day
March—Nursery Rhymes, Baby Animals
April—Dinosaurs, Spring, Digging and Planting
May—Butterflies and Bugs
June—Zoo Animals and Sea Creatures
Tuesday & Thursday 8:30 am - 12:00 pm or 3:00 pm
Monday & Wednesday 8:30 am - 12:00 pm or 3:00 pm
Friday (for children in either above class) 8:30am - 12:00 pm or 3:00 pm
Preschool 3's (The Bears' Class)
The three-year-old class continues to promote the child's positive sense of self while nurturing his or her growing independence. Teachers continue to pay special attention to each child's cognitive development through daily exposure to language arts (e.g., recognizing and writing letters and numbers using the Handwriting Without Tears early childhood program), math readiness (e.g., counting, developing one-to-one correspondence, sorting, recognizing shapes, developing spatial awareness), and inquiry-based thematic social studies and science.
We capitalize on the young child's imagination with creative art activities and hands-on, learning centers. The children receive weekly art and music lessons, as well as, weekly visits by the Christ Episcopal School librarian. Friday chapel, led by the Christ Episcopal School Chaplain, includes songs and storytelling. Off-campus field trips begin at this age, building on the themes taught in the classroom.
Sample Thematic Units may include:
September—Fall, Family, All About Me
February—Bread Around the World
March—Castles, Knights and Princesses
April—Spring/Seeds-how things grow, Insects
May—Farm Life and Animals
Monday, Wednesday & Friday 8:30 am - 12:00 pm
Monday, Wednesday & Friday 8:30 am - 3:00 pm
Monday - Friday 8:30 am - 12:00 pm
Monday - Friday 8:30 am - 3:00 pm
PreKindergarten (The Bugs' Class)
The Christ Episcopal School (CES) PreKindergarten class continues instruction in handwriting, language arts, and reading readiness guided by each child’s developmental readiness and using specially designed programs such as Words Their Way and Handwriting Without Tears when appropriate. Mathematics instruction is based on the early childhood components of the Go Math! series and supports the development of conceptual skills by exploring topics such as numerals and numeration, data collection, patterns, measurement, money and time. In science and social studies, PreK children study a variety of topics: from global cultures to their own communities, children learn about our large and diverse world. Children are given the responsibility of planting, raising and harvesting vegetables in our school's garden. A "grade-to-grade" partnership with the Christ Episcopal School Kindergarten students creates a special connection in PreK, which fosters community and creates a smooth transition for the PreKindergarten children as they move into the “Big School,” also known as Kindergarten!
The PreKindergarten class begins foreign language instruction with weekly lessons in Spanish. They continue to receive regular Music and Art instruction, and also make weekly trips to the Christ Episcopal School library to learn how to check out books. In addition to their regular morning and afternoon outdoor play time, the PreK class receives formal instruction with the CES physical education teacher once a week.
Some of the thematic units in the PreK class include exploring the tools of science such as magnets, prisms, magnifying glasses, and making observations. There are extensive studies on a wide range of plants and animals and their habitats. Social studies units include learning how to read maps and globes, some of the symbols that represent the United States of America, and the importance of some of the most influential U.S. Presidents.
Additional themes may include:
September--Color, Family and Friends
October--Fall, Fire Safety
November--First Thanksgiving, Wampanoag Tribe and Pilgrims
January--Winter, Martin Luther King, Jr., Arctic Animals
February--Chinese New Year, U.S. Presidents, One Hundredth Day of School
March--Map Skills, Mammals, Wind and Air
April--Spring, Oviparous Animals, Reptiles,
Monday - Friday 8:00 am - 12:00 pm
Monday - Friday 8:00 am - 3:00 pm