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How Our Children Are Taught

 

Our teachers use developmentally appropriate practice endorsed by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) as the hallmark of high-quality preschool programs. Simply put, teaching is based on each child's age and stage of development. This means that teachers build on what your child already knows and can do. Activities are planned to be challenging, but achievable with a little bit of help. Goals are "just right" for the child.  Learning experiences also value and consider each child's family, language, and culture.

 

We employ multiple settings for learning--teacher-directed large group circle time, small group cooperative work, as well as independent free choice play.  Such variety helps youngsters learn how to positively interact with adults and peers and to be self-motivated. This also helps to develop skills of self-regulation, creativity, negotiation, and perseverance which can better prepare a child for success in school as stated in The Every Illinois Child Ready for Kindergarten Initiative.

 

 

What Our Children Are Taught

The ELC makes sure that its play-based curriculum is aligned with the Illinois State Early Childhood Learning Standards, Benchmarks, and Goals and with the Illinois State Kindergarten Individual Development Survey (KIDS) so that our preschoolers are prepared for kindergarten and beyond.

 

Our goal is to create experiences for children that build on their natural curiosity and foster in them a love of learning that will last a lifetime. Our program includes Bible lessons, language arts, social studies, physical education, science, technology, engineering, arts and crafts, music, imaginative play, creative dramatics, and math. 


Here is a sampling of activities used in the areas of foundational spiritual, cognitive, physical, and social-emotional development:

 

Learning Area

Sampling of Skills Taught

Sampling of Performance Indicators*


Religion


God is love; Growing in Christ

Bible stories; religious art projects; dramatization



Language Arts

Listening, speaking in full sentences; taking turns speaking; recognizing key ideas in stories


Story listening, telling and creating; rhyming stories and songs



Social Studies

Families, people, geography, knowledge of other countries and cultures


Sharing family life and cultural traditions; schoolwide travel unit/activity



Physical Education

Fine and large motor skill development, eye-hand coordination; physical control


Play with manipulative; large motor play daily; games such as Catch and Freeze Dance



Social-Emotional


Self-regulation; empathy; respect; confidence

Stories; role-playing; reading facial expressions; challenging students while providing support

STEAM




Science


Hypothesizing, measuring, observing; understanding about the parts and functions of the human body

Nature walks; life cycle of butterflies; observation of specimens from Field Museum; identifying human body parts and functions; the five senses

 

 


Technology

Precoding through directional and counting games/activities; interactive computer/tablet exploration; interpreting musical sounds

Games (Chutes and Ladders); following and creating a treasure map; using the Internet for listening to music and animal sounds; discovering countries; digital keyboard


Engineering

Building; understanding how things work

Marble Run; block zoos and castles; Lego spaceships; nanobug paths

 

Arts

Process art allowing for creativity; variety of methods and media

Impression paintings using leaves; puffy glue painting; painting with feathers; 3-D projects

 



Math


Number sense; categorizing; sets; patterns; geometry; shapes;

more or less

Ordinal counting (1st, 2nd, etc.) while standing in line; categorizing beads; shape games; how many items are missing from a set; dice games

 

* View our Slide Show to see children engaged in some of these activities.


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